Chronic Diseases

Peripheral Vascular Disease (PVD) occurs when blood vessels in the legs are narrowed, hardened or blocked by fatty deposits. Blood flow to your feet and legs decreases. The biggest affect of poor circulation on the foot, is that its problems (such as sores, infections, cuts, etc) develop, they do not heal as well as they should. In many cases they do not heal at all without special care. The reason for this is that the blood carries vital elements (eg oxygen) that the bodies’ tissues need for vitality and healing.

The symptoms that are experienced can depend on which artery is affected and how much the blood flow is reduced. Some of the symptoms include:

  • Claudication (this is a dull cramping pain in the calf muscle that comes on after walking a certain distance - it is relieved by rest).

  • Numbness or tingling in the foot, or toes can occur.

  • Changes in the color of the skin (it becomes more pale, bluish, or reddish).

  • Changes in skin temperature (the foot becomes cooler. See cold feet).

  • Skin breakdowns, infection and sores do not heal as well as they should.