Epidemiology of Peripheral Artery Disease

Criqui MH, Aboyans V.
Epidemiology of Peripheral Artery Disease. Circ Res 2015;116:1509-1526.

The following are 10 points to remember about the epidemiology of peripheral artery disease (PAD):

  1. The most common symptom of PAD is intermittent claudication, but noninvasive measures, such as the ankle-brachial index, show that asymptomatic PAD is several times more common in the population than intermittent claudication.
  2. PAD prevalence and incidence are both sharply age-related, rising >10% among patients in their 60s and 70s.
  3. With aging of the global population, it seems likely that PAD will be increasingly common in the future.
  4. Patients with premature PAD (onset of symptoms at or before age 45 years) seem to have more rapid progression of disease and generally poorer outcomes.
  5. Prevalence seems to be higher among men than women for more severe or symptomatic disease.
  6. The major risk factors for PAD are similar to those for coronary and cerebrovascular disease, with some differences in the relative importance of factors.
  7. Smoking is a particularly strong risk factor for PAD, as is diabetes mellitus, and several newer risk markers have shown independent associations with PAD.
  8. PAD is strongly associated with concomitant coronary and cerebrovascular diseases.
  9. After adjustment for known cardiovascular disease risk factors, PAD is associated with an increased risk of incident coronary and cerebrovascular disease morbidity and mortality.
  10. The diagnosis and treatment of PAD in its asymptomatic stage may prove highly beneficial, particularly with respect to interventions aimed at ameliorating risk factors common to atherosclerotic disease of various vascular beds.

Clinical Topics: Prevention, Vascular Medicine, Smoking

Keywords: Ankle Brachial Index, Cerebrovascular Disorders, Diabetes Mellitus, Intermittent Claudication, Peripheral Arterial Disease, Risk Factors, Smoking, Vascular Diseases

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