Procedures and Testing
Getting the right diagnosis is the first step to treating “hardening of the arteries,” also called peripheral artery disease (PAD). When the heart specialists of Cross County Cardiology – Mount Sinai suspect atherosclerosis in the peripheral arteries of the neck, arms, and legs, we first try to diagnose the condition conservatively, using noninvasive procedures. If we are still unsure what is causing the condition, we may need to use an invasive procedure.
One test we use to diagnose PAD is Doppler ultrasound. This advanced imaging technique provides real-time information about blood flow. It does so by adding color-coding to standard ultrasound images.
Minimally Invasive Procedures
Sometimes noninvasive procedures do not provide enough information to determine whether a patient has PAD. In these cases, we may need to use a minimally invasive strategy to “get a closer look” at the arteries from the inside. These procedures include:
Cardiac catheterization: This is approach uses a long, thin tube called a catheter. We introduce that into one of your major arteries and guide it to the area that is blocked. Often, we enter through the femoral artery in the groin or the radial artery in the wrist or arm.
Peripheral angiogram: We use this approach to determine whether a patient has PAD. These procedures may also be used to treat the buildup of plaque that has narrowed or blocked an artery, using procedures such as angioplasty, atherectomy, or stent placement.
We are here to talk with you about your condition. We always take the time to discuss any diagnostic tests or treatment procedures we recommend. We are here to help you, not just treat your condition.