Peripheral Arterial Disease

Peripheral Arterial Disease (PAD) most commonly develops as a result of atherosclerosis, or hardening of the arteries, which occurs when cholesterol and scar tissue build up, forming a substance called plaque inside the arteries in the feet and legs. It can also occur in the arms. The clogged arteries decrease blood flow and this may lead to clots.

Symptoms include:

  • Skin sores and lesions on the legs and feet
  • Leg and foot pain that worsens on walking (claudication). In advanced cases, the pain may be present at rest.
  • Faint or absent pulse in legs and feet below blockages or arm pain if the obstruction is in the arms

PAD can result in persistent sores, the inability to walk without pain and ultimately, the loss of the affected limb if not promptly treated.

Prognosis depends on the underlying disease and the stage at which Peripheral Arterial Disease is discovered.

Treatments may include lifestyle changes, medications such as those that relieve pain and those that prevent clots from forming, endovascular therapies and sometimes surgery. Which treatments are used depends on the severity of the symptoms, the severity and location of the blockage, the risks related to the treatment (particularly for surgery), and the overall health of the person. Regardless of the specific treatments used, people still need to modify risk factors for atherosclerosis to improve their overall prognosis.

One of the complications of PAD is the formation of a blood clot in the narrowed artery lumen closing it off entirely. This is referred to as Peripheral Arterial Occlusion (PAO) and is a medical emergency. Prompt action to remove the clot is necessary to prevent the need for amputation of the affected limb.


The EkoSonic® Endovascular System Acoustic Pulse Thrombolysis™ treatment dissolves arterial blood clots by safely accelerating drug penetration into the clot, even in difficult-to-reach areas.
In contrast to catheter-directed therapy, the EkoSonic® Endovascular System offers:

  • Shorter treatment times2,3
  • Higher dissolution rate of the entire clot (95.3% vs. 66.7%, p=0.002)2
  • Lower bleeding rates (4.7% vs. 23.8%, p=0.026)2
  • Lower 30-day amputation rates (19.5% vs. 42.9%, p=0.04)2
  • Shorter hospital stays (5.7 vs. 8.3 days, p=0.027)2