Angioplasty for PAD?

Eddy Edson

Well-Known Member
Relationship to Diabetes
Type 2
Wondering if anybody has any experience with this?

I've been dealing with PAD/claudication since DX'd with a blocked left femoral artery in March 2018 & I've certainly made some good strides, so to speak (groan). This year I'm averaging a smidgen over 12,000 steps per day at about 110 steps per minute, which makes me "very active" or "pretty damn active", depending on which dubious little classification I look at.

Which is all well & good, but I want it to be better. Some days marching out 16K+ steps is a breeze; other days getting past 10K is a real struggle. It all seems random - maybe a little bit assocated with how well I've been sleeping, but only a little bit. Overall, things seem to have plateaued.

Seeing doc next week for regular diabetes review and thinking of getting him to refer me back to the vascular specialist. I want to check out whether/how much angioplasty might add to blood flow improvements I've gotten from walking, quitting smoking, weight loss, BP/BG/LDL reduction etc. I have this image of an annoying little plug of gunk in my artery & if I could just tunnel through it, I'd be bounding over the hills like a healthy young mountain goat or at least like a relatively healthy llama ....
 

HenryBennett

Well-Known Member
Relationship to Diabetes
Type 2
Hi Eddy,

Some months ago I had two angioplasties - one emergency and the other planned - two stents on each occasion. It does take some time for stents to settle down but, as I understand it, it’s not the stents themselves we have to think about. A blocked artery can lead to muscle damage and, as we’re told by the cardiologist, the heart is simply a muscle.

I too rely on walking and average around 11,000 per day. I feel surprisingly well and don’t get too hung up on visualising what’s in my arteries, but then at 66 I’ve no ambition to emulate a mountain goat. In itself exercise is of no interest to me, it’s my route to a longer and more enjoyable life.

I‘m grappling with the different needs of heart disease and diabetes, and am grateful that I have the time (I’m retired). My main concern, heart-wise, is a low pulse. Amazingly, I have an appointment today week at the local cardiac unit and will discuss this. I had a brief telecon with the nurse recently and she seemed ok with it.

As for my BG, it seems fairly well under control.

I work on the principal that if I feel well I am well. That may be an illusion and one day I’ll just keel over.

I’m interested to hear how you get on next week.

Henry
 

Eddy Edson

Well-Known Member
Relationship to Diabetes
Type 2
Hi Eddy,

Some months ago I had two angioplasties - one emergency and the other planned - two stents on each occasion. It does take some time for stents to settle down but, as I understand it, it’s not the stents themselves we have to think about. A blocked artery can lead to muscle damage and, as we’re told by the cardiologist, the heart is simply a muscle.

I too rely on walking and average around 11,000 per day. I feel surprisingly well and don’t get too hung up on visualising what’s in my arteries, but then at 66 I’ve no ambition to emulate a mountain goat. In itself exercise is of no interest to me, it’s my route to a longer and more enjoyable life.

I‘m grappling with the different needs of heart disease and diabetes, and am grateful that I have the time (I’m retired). My main concern, heart-wise, is a low pulse. Amazingly, I have an appointment today week at the local cardiac unit and will discuss this. I had a brief telecon with the nurse recently and she seemed ok with it.

As for my BG, it seems fairly well under control.

I work on the principal that if I feel well I am well. That may be an illusion and one day I’ll just keel over.

I’m interested to hear how you get on next week.

Henry

Well done on dealing so well with the HA! My leg thing seems pretty trivial by comparison, but walking has always been something I enjoy & so I'd like to get better at it again if poss. We'll see what the medicoes have to say about it ...
 

everydayupsanddowns

Administrator
Staff member
Relationship to Diabetes
Type 1
Haven’t any knowledge or experience to share @Eddy Edson - but wanted to congratulate you on your attitude, determination (and your step count!).

I hope you can get some helpful pointers from your medics next week
 

Eddy Edson

Well-Known Member
Relationship to Diabetes
Type 2
So finally got to see the vascular guy.

He said it would make no sense for me to have angioplasty - "open a can of worms" - and in any case, any intervention would more likely be a arterial bypass graft (sounds much ickier to me).

My ankle-brachial index (ABI), the usual quick non-invasive procedure for helping to diagnose PAD, has gone up to 0.95 (borderline-nearly normal) from 0.70 (eek!) a couple of years ago, and he says the pulse in my left foot now seems nearly normal also.

He says he expects that if I keep on with walking, taking statins etc I will probably be free of claudication in a couple of years. Which is extremely heartening! I'd never heard of actully getting rid of claudication, just making it better. So that's just great.

OTOH, he doesn't think my fatigue issue has much to do with the leg, and he doesn't have any other bright ideas about that. So no quick fix for that one.

Anyway, the 0.25 ABI improvement is pretty major & really does seem to point to progress towards being "cured" of this thing. Not in terms of having the arterial blockage go away, rather by continuing to develop collateral vessels bypassing it.

His advice: continuing the walking will continue to promote continued collateral development, and continuing to keep LDL super-low via statinsand a low saturated fat diet will keep the collaterals open. Hopefully the fatigue thing will take care of itself, somehow or other.
 

HenryBennett

Well-Known Member
Relationship to Diabetes
Type 2
Great progress Eddy, well done. Good news for a Monday morning.
 

Eddy Edson

Well-Known Member
Relationship to Diabetes
Type 2
Thanks, people!
 
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