If your podiatrist suspects that you may have peripheral artery disease (PAD), they will most likely perform a vascular test called a duplex ultrasound. Duplex ultrasound uses two modes of ultrasound: 1) traditional ultrasound to create images of your blood vessels based on sound waves bouncing off them, and 2) doppler ultrasound to estimate the speed and direction of blood by recording sound waves that reflect off it as it flows. Duplex ultrasound is non-invasive and painless. Your podiatrist will spread gel on the skin of the area(s) to be tested, and then wave a transducer wand which emits the sound waves and records the echoes that are reflected. For more information about duplex ultrasound, ask your podiatrist.
Vascular testing plays an important part in diagnosing disease like peripheral artery disease. If you have symptoms of peripheral artery disease, or diabetes, consult with Matthew McQuaid, DPM from Lake Mendocino Podiatry. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.
What Is Vascular Testing?
Vascular testing checks for how well blood circulation is in the veins and arteries. This is most often done to determine and treat a patient for peripheral artery disease (PAD), stroke, and aneurysms. Podiatrists utilize vascular testing when a patient has symptoms of PAD or if they believe they might. If a patient has diabetes, a podiatrist may determine a vascular test to be prudent to check for poor blood circulation.
How Is it Conducted?
Most forms of vascular testing are non-invasive. Podiatrists will first conduct a visual inspection for any wounds, discoloration, and any abnormal signs prior to a vascular test.
The most common tests include:
- Ankle-Brachial Index (ABI) examination
- Doppler examination
- Pedal pulses
These tests are safe, painless, and easy to do. Once finished, the podiatrist can then provide a diagnosis and the best course for treatment.
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