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Peripheral Arterial Disease: Simple Quiz Keeps You Circulating
Date:9/9/2009

- placing 18.2 million Americans at risk.

The online quiz at SIRF's Legs for Life(R) Web site (www.legsforlife.org) helps assess health, family and lifestyle risks for PAD. The higher one's score, the more important it is for that individual to discuss the quiz's results with his or her doctor.

Legs for Life(R) -- a community health and public information program of SIR Foundation -- began a decade ago because interventional radiologists -- vascular experts who treat PAD -- recognized that the disease is a major public health problem with a growing incidence, yet awareness among the general public and nonvascular health care providers is low. The primary goals of Legs for Life(R) are to educate the public, primary care physicians and the medical community; identify patients at risk through screenings; and strengthen collaborative relationships among health care professionals who treat this condition.

Legs for Life(R) offers a free national screening program dedicated to improving the cardiovascular health of the community with the early detection of PAD during September's national PAD awareness month. In September, limited free testing is available for PAD at Legs for Life(R) sites around the country. During a screening, the ankle brachial index (ABI) -- a simple and painless test -- is used; the ABI compares the blood pressure in the legs to the blood pressure in the arms to determine how well the blood is flowing and if additional tests are needed. A recent report has shown that the ABI may improve the accuracy of cardiovascular risk prediction beyond the traditional Framingham Risk Score.(4)

In many cases, PAD can be treated with medication (such as blood thinners or drugs that dilate an affected artery), lifestyle changes (such as smoking cessation), diet and a structured exercise program. With e
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SOURCE Society of Interventional Radiology
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