PERIPHERAL VASCULAR DISEASE (PVD)
Peripheral vascular disease is a slow and progressive circulation disorder. Narrowing, blockage, or spasms in a blood vessel can cause PVD. It may affect any blood vessel outside of the heart including the arteries, veins, or lymphatic vessels. Organs supplied by these vessels, such as the brain and legs, may not get enough blood flow for proper function. However, the legs and feet are most commonly affected. The most common cause of PVD is atherosclerosis, the buildup of plaque inside the artery wall. Plaque reduces the amount of blood flow to the limbs. It also decreases the oxygen and nutrients available to the tissue. People with coronary artery disease (CAD) often also have PVD. Those who smoke or have diabetes have the highest risk of complications from PVD because these risk factors also cause impaired blood flow.