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Peripheral arterial disease (PAD) occurs when plaque (a fatty deposit) builds up on your artery walls causing a restriction in the flow of blood and oxygen to your limbs. The most common area affected is your legs.

Many people with peripheral arterial disease experience no symptoms. But as your veins continue to narrow you may begin to experience aching in your leg muscles brought on by any physical activity such as walking. Other symptoms may include:

  • Numbness in feet and toes
  • Cold, pale lower limbs
  • Hair loss on your legs or slow growing toenails
  • Wounds that are slow to heal on your legs or feet
  • Hair loss on your legs
  • Change in skin colour on your legs and feet

Left untreated peripheral arterial disease could cause permanent damage to your limbs. You should seek medical attention if you experience unexplained leg pain.

If conservative methods to treat your PAD are not successful your consultant may recommend peripheral arterial stenting.

What happens during peripheral arterial stenting?

Peripheral arterial stenting can take from 30 minutes up to several hours depending on the amount of narrowing you have. Your consultant may offer you a sedative to help you relax.

A sheath (a short, soft plastic tube used to access your artery) is usually inserted in your femoral artery near your groin. Local anaesthetic may be used on the insertion area.

Your consultant will pass a catheter along the artery. Using x-ray guidance and contrast dye they will pass a small tube with a tiny inflatable balloon at the end down the catheter and across the narrowed part of the artery. They will then inflate the balloon to widen the artery. They will also expand a stent inside the artery to hold it open. The balloon is then deflated and withdrawn leaving the stent to hold the artery open.

After your procedure you will need to remain in bed for several hours. Our healthcare team will monitor your recovery. Be sure and let us know if you are in any pain.

Going home after peripheral arterial stenting

You may be able to go home the day of your procedure. In some cases an overnight stay may be required. You will not be allowed to drive until your consultant releases you to do so. Please arrange for someone to take you home.

You should avoid any strenuous activity or heavy lifting until your consultant releases you. Continue taking any high blood pressure or cholesterol medications as prescribed.

Bruising around the insertion area is normal. Contact us if you experience any increase in pain, redness, swelling or discharge from this area.

Be sure and discuss any return to work with your consultant.

As with any procedure there could be complications:

  • Bleeding
  • Bruising
  • Infection

Specific complications of peripheral arterial stenting may include:

  • Reaction to contrast dye
  • Re-narrowing of your artery

Find your nearest hospital that provides this treatment

67 Lansdowne Road, Bournemouth, BH1 1RW

01202 291866
Overall rating View rating

Shenfield Road, Brentwood, CM15 8EH

01277 695695
Overall rating Good

Warren Road, Brighton, BN2 6DX

01273 624488
Overall rating Meeting standards

3 Clifton Hill, Clifton, Bristol, BS8 1BN

0117 906 4870
Overall rating Good

78 Broyle Road, Chichester, PO19 6WB

01243 530600
Overall rating Good

Wonford Road, Exeter, EX2 4UG

01392 262110
Overall rating Good

Stirling Road, Guildford, GU2 7RF

01483 555805
Overall rating Good

2 Leighton Street, Leeds, LS1 3EB

01133 882 067
Overall rating Outstanding

Scraptoft Lane, Leicester, LE5 1HY

0116 2769 401
Overall rating Good
Tunbridge Wells  

Kingswood Road, Tunbridge Wells, TN2 4UL

01892 531111
Overall rating Good

Winchester Road, Chandlers Ford, Eastleigh, SO53 2DW

02380 266 377
Overall rating Good

Haxby Road, York, YO31 8TA

01904 715000
Overall rating Good

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