Critical Limb Ischemia
Treatment in Michigan

Claudication

Critical Limb Ischemia

Critical limb ischemia (CLI) is a severe blockage in the arteries of the lower extremities, which markedly reduces blood-flow. It is a serious form of peripheral arterial disease, or PAD, but less common than claudication. PAD is caused by atherosclerosis, the hardening and narrowing of the arteries over time due to the buildup of fatty deposits called plaque.

CLI is a chronic condition that results in severe pain in the feet or toes, even while resting. Complications of poor circulation can include sores and wounds that won’t heal in the legs and feet. Left untreated, the complications of CLI will result in amputation of the affected limb.

Critical limb Ischemia is a condition in which too little amount of blood can flow through the arteries to the feet. You then have pain in the foot or toes, while you are just sitting or lying still. It is often the case that this pain is most noticeable when you are lying in bed.

Symptoms Of Critical Limb Ischemia

The most common consequences of critical ischemia are reduced skin circulation, cold feet, nail abnormalities, reduced hair growth on the toes and lower legs and poorly healing skin wounds. Sometimes the foot is also a bit swollen.

Critical Limb Ischemia Treatment in Michigan

Always you will get advice for a healthy lifestyle.

Depending on the severeness, often gait therapy is effective. Intensive walking training increases blood flow to the smallest vessels in the legs. This reduces the pain complaints.

Sometimes medications are needed for high blood pressure, elevated cholesterol, or diabetes. In addition, anti-clotting drugs are prescribed to prevent blood vessel occlusion.

Ballon angioplasty and stent treatment:

  1. The vascular surgeon injects a special contrast medium through a catheter into your bloodstream. The contrast dye allows the doctor to see your arteries on an X-ray monitor.
  2. An instrument with a small balloon on the end of it is inserted through an artery in your leg or arm and advanced through the arteries until the narrowed area is reached.
  3. The balloon is inflated, pushing the plaque against the artery wall; this dilates the opening in the artery, allowing blood to flow again.
  4. The balloon is then deflated and removed from the body. 

Angioplasty treatment may be not sufficient: the blood still cannot flow properly after the treatment. Then a stent can be placed. A stent is a kind of metal ballpoint pen. It gives the vessel wall extra support and prevents the blood vessel from springing back after angioplasty.

Bypass surgery
Sometimes also angioplasty or stent placement isn’t sufficient, due to a very extensive narrowing or that the narrowing is in a place where a dotter cannot be performed. Then bypass surgery may be an option.

Then the vascular surgeon creates a bridging (bypass) for the occluded or severely narrowed artery. The upper connection of the bypass will be made at the level of the groin to the femoral artery. For the bottom connection, a duplex examination or angiography is used in advance to locate a site in the blood vessel below the closure. This can be above or below the knee.