Ankle Brachial Index Testing in Hawthorne, NJ
Over 8 million Americans suffer from peripheral artery disease (PAD), which is a serious condition caused by constriction of blood vessels due to plaque (atherosclerosis). Plaque is a cholesterol-containing solid that clogs blood vessels, and its build-up decreases circulation. The danger of low circulation is that it impedes delivery of oxygen and glucose to cells, and since both substances are critical for cellular metabolism, it can lead to many painful reactions such as cramps, numbness and infection in your extremities. If left untreated, PAD can lead to heart attack, stroke and even death.
In order to diagnose PAD and begin effective treatment, a simple, non-invasive ankle brachial index test, which is also commonly called an ABI diagnostic test, is required. If you suspect you are suffering from peripheral artery disease, consult a cardiovascular health specialist in Hawthorne and request an ankle brachial index test. Call (201) 806-6099 or contact Dr. M.T. Shahab online.
What to Expect During an ABI Index Diagnostic Test
There are no important instructions to follow in preparation for your ankle brachial test appointment. It is recommended to wear clothing that makes it easy for a technician to access your arm and ankle. The ankle brachial index is conducted by using an inflatable cuff to compare systolic blood pressure at the ankle and arm.
An ABI diagnostic test will be calculated for both legs. Your overall value is determined by taking the higher pressure from the 2 arteries at the ankle and dividing it by the systolic pressure in the arm.
|Formula for ankle brachial index =||Systolic number at ankle|
|Systolic number at arm|
The ankle brachial index test is painless and results can be calculated by your healthcare provider immediately to make appropriate peripheral artery disease treatment recommendations.
Reading Your ABI Test Results
If your ankle brachial index ratio is 1.0 - 1.4, this is considered normal (blood flow is the same in the leg and the arm). However, if the value is lower than 0.9, the blood circulation at the ankle is lower than at the arm, suggesting artery narrowing or blockage and the likelihood of peripheral artery disease.
If the ABI test results indicate low blood flow, or if the ratio is over 1.4 (suggesting that rigid arteries are contributing to inaccurate readings), more involved procedures may be used for diagnosis, including various non-invasive visualization techniques including an ultrasound, Doppler imaging or MRI.
Treatment After Your Ankle Brachial Index Test
If your ankle brachial index test results indicate you have blockage which is causing peripheral artery disease, your healthcare provider will likely recommend immediate lifestyle changes. Treatment after your ankle brachial index can help to reduce and even eliminate symptoms and could include cessation of smoking, a low cholesterol diet, managing diabetes and maintaining a healthy weight. Monitoring blood pressure is also important because high blood pressure has no symptoms and is a contributing factor to the disease.
High blood pressure and cholesterol lowering medications may be necessary, and if the condition is severe enough, an angioplasty might be necessary (inserting a tiny balloon and inflating it to expand the constricted artery). A stent (wire mesh) implant is another surgical option that will hold the artery open, as well as bypass surgery.
If you are diagnosed with PAD, regular check-ups where the index is re-measured is often required, which may involve taking the index before and after walking on a treadmill.
To schedule your ABI diagnostic test, contact us today! Call (201) 806-6099 or contact Dr. M.T. Shahab online.
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