Can Exercise Cure PAD?

Can Exercise Cure PAD?

At present, there is no known cure for Peripheral Arterial Disease (PAD.) In its early form, PAD is not debilitating. However, once the disease begins to progress, it may result in life-threatening conditions. To prevent that, there have been studies linking PAD to various methods of treatment.  

Such treatments do not allow the patient to be completely rid of the condition, however, it will allow the patient to live without PAD’s more common symptoms. One of the most popular treatments available is the inclusion of exercise in one’s daily routine.  

Physical Activity 

Exercise is an accepted form of treatment for symptoms of PAD. The actual physical activity, in this case, can be varied. In some cases, the patient might even benefit from having a professional guide them through their exercises (if only to prevent injury and ensure that progress is made.)  

Benefits of Exercise 

Broadly speaking, exercise is beneficial for treating symptoms of PAD. However, if one were to look at it more closely, then specific benefits can be introduced. Like, for example, the following: 

  • Reduces claudication (pain or numbness) in the legs and feet; 
  • Allows patients to exercise more readily; 
  • Potentially prevents or improves physical disability caused by PAD; 
  • and, it decreases the risk of mortal danger due to cardiovascular events (which can lead to heart attacks or strokes.) 

These aforementioned benefits are more than worth the initial pain and trouble of exercising. Of course, that doesn’t mean that a patient should jump into just any exercise program. A patient’s unique capabilities and their overall condition greatly affects the type of exercise that might be recommended for them  

Types of Exercises to Cure PAD 

There’s a bunch of different types of exercises that can help a patient treat symptoms of PAD. However, they can broadly be divided between two types of exercises. These two types are: 

  • Supervised Exercise: According to the American Heart Association, it’s best if PAD patients participate in exercise therapy that is tailored specifically for them. This way, the patient’s progress can be supervised and good results can be insured.  
  • Home-Based Exercise: If supervised exercise is unavailable, then there are various home-based exercise programs that can be a convenient alternative. However, doctor consultation is definitely still recommended prior to engaging in any home-based exercise programs.  

Conclusion — Can Exercise Cure PAD? 

In conclusion, while exercise cannot completely cure a person of PAD, it is one of the best methods of treating its symptoms. In this case, taking the initiative to do something about your condition is the best, and the only way to be able to get control back into your life again.  

 

REFERENCES 

  1. Schiattarella, et al. “Physical Activity in the Prevention of Peripheral Artery Disease in the Elderly.” Frontiers, Frontiers, 7 Jan. 2014, www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fphys.2014.00012/full. 
  2. “Archive of All Online Content.” Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis, and Vascular Biology, www.ahajournals.org/doi/10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.109.881888. 
  3. “Prevention and Treatment of PAD.” About Heart Attacks, www.heart.org/en/health-topics/peripheral-artery-disease/prevention-and-treatment-of-pad.