Features September 2009 Issue

What’s the Best Treatment for Pelvic Arterial Blockages?

Newer, less-invasive techniques are proving to be safe and effective for the treatment of peripheral arterial disease.

More than eight million Americans are affected by peripheral arterial disease (PAD). In patients with PAD, obstructing plaques caused by atherosclerosis commonly occur in the aorta and iliac arteries. When these large blood vessels become blocked, the lower extremities can become starved of blood. In serious cases, amputation may be necessary. In the past, bypass surgery has been the solution, but newer, less-invasive procedures are becoming available. A study in the July issue of the Journal of Vascular Surgery found that endovascular interventions using catheter-based devices to re-open peripheral arteries are being used much more commonly now and that their success rates are proving to be especially effective. "Endovascular techniques are vastly different from traditional, ‘open’ surgery," says Christopher T. Bajzer, MD, FACC, associate director of Vascular Intervention in the Department of Cardiovascular Medicine’s, Sections of Vascular Medicine and Interventional Cardiology at Cleveland Clinic. According to Dr. Bajzer, traditional surgery for pelvic arterial blockages include aortic-to-iliac bypass surgery and femoral-to-femoral bypass surgery. Bypass surgery is invasive and can cause serious complications.

To continue reading this article you must be a paid subscriber.

Subscribe to Heart Advisor

Get the next year of HEART ADVISOR for just $20. That's a savings of $19 off the regular rate.

With your paid subscription you will receive unlimited access to all of our online content. That is over a decade of previous issues from Cleveland Clinic, the hospital rated #1 in cardiac care by U.S. News & World Report - free of charge.

Subscriber Log In

Forgot your password? Click Here.

Already subscribe but haven't registered for all the benefits of the website? Click here.