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How Is the Ankle-Brachial Index Measured?

Monday, 29 March 2021 00:00

The ankle-brachial index (ABI) is a screening tool used to identify peripheral artery disease, a condition that causes poor circulation in the lower limbs. The ABI is a simple measure that involves taking the blood pressure at the arm and at the ankle and comparing the two numbers to determine the patient’s risk of having peripheral artery disease. This is most frequently done using a blood pressure cuff and a Doppler ultrasound instrument. Some doctors may do the ABI using an automated device instead. Regardless of the method used to obtain this reading, the ABI is quick, noninvasive, and virtually painless. If you suspect that you may have poor circulation in your feet and ankles, please consult with a podiatrist who can screen you for peripheral artery disease.

Vascular testing plays an important part in diagnosing disease like peripheral artery disease. If you have symptoms of peripheral artery disease, or diabetes, consult with one of our podiatrists from Foot & Ankle Associates of Maine. Our doctors will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

What Is Vascular Testing?

Vascular testing checks for how well blood circulation is in the veins and arteries. This is most often done to determine and treat a patient for peripheral artery disease (PAD), stroke, and aneurysms. Podiatrists utilize vascular testing when a patient has symptoms of PAD or if they believe they might. If a patient has diabetes, a podiatrist may determine a vascular test to be prudent to check for poor blood circulation.

How Is it Conducted?

Most forms of vascular testing are non-invasive. Podiatrists will first conduct a visual inspection for any wounds, discoloration, and any abnormal signs prior to a vascular test.

 The most common tests include:

  • Ankle-Brachial Index (ABI) examination
  • Doppler examination
  • Pedal pulses

These tests are safe, painless, and easy to do. Once finished, the podiatrist can then provide a diagnosis and the best course for treatment.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Brunswick, Damariscotta, Augusta, ME . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

 

Read more about Vascular Testing in Podiatry
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