Peripheral arterial disease (PAD) due to atherosclerosis, although frequently ignored in clinical practice, results in significant cardiovascular morbidity and mortality and may progress due to uncontrolled atherosclerotic risk factors. Although treatment of claudication symptoms is important for improved lifestyle, treatment of risk factors will prolong life. Smoking cessation, blood pressure control, lipid modification and strict control of diabetes mellitus will reduce the risk of both macro and micro vascular disease progression. Risk factor modification in conjunction with antiplatelet treatment results in decreased heart attack, stroke and peripheral vascular events in patients with PAD.
Keywords: peripheral arterial disease, cardiovascular risk, cardiovascular morbidity, smoking cessation
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