PAD Clinical Information

A Serious Disease

Far from being a benign disease with symptoms primarily of intermittent claudication, PAD is now recognized as a manifestation of systemic atherosclerotic disease that leads to increased mortality, amputations, stroke, and MIs, as well as diminished quality of life. It is also expensive: Treatment for the initial intervention and first year follow-up costs more for PAD ($51,100 in 2008) than cardiovascular disease.

A Large Universe of Potential Patients

Recent studies from the SAGE group now indicate that as many as 18 million people in the US had PAD in 2010. Those at the most risk include:

Over age 65 (about 20% over age 70 have PAD)

Known atherosclerotic coronary, carotid, or renal arterial disease

Over 50 with a history of smoking or diabetes (about 30-40% have PAD)

Leg symptoms with exertion or ischemic rest pain or abnormal pulse

About 30% of those diagnosed with PAD should have a vascular intervention (and about 40-50% of those need both lower limbs)

But a Lack of Diagnostic Testing is a "Stenosis" Limiting the Number of Patients that are Identified as having Vascular Disease

The PARTNERS study showed that overall 29% of the at risk population above has PAD. If dependent on the classical diagnostic signs of claudication, only 11% would be diagnosed. Even including other symptoms, it is estimated that only 16% of those with PAD are currently diagnosed. Almost 50% have no pain or symptoms and were only found by ABI testing. Only about 15% of those even with claudication are referred to a vascular specialist.

You can improve outcomes for these patients by identifying them in earlier stages of PAD, when they can be treated with exercise or with pharmaceuticals. This can save your health plan significant costs compared to later stage options like surgical intervention, as well as resulting in improved quality of life and patient satisfaction.