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Leg Attacks can be Fatal if they Remain Undiagnosed

November 17, 2014 - New Delhi, Delhi, India

We are all aware of the dangers of a heart attack, few are aware of an equally dangerous condition called “Leg Attacks”. Quite similar to heart attacks, leg attacks occur when there are blockages in the blood vessels of the leg. This condition is exacerbated in Diabetics, those aged above 50 and smokers who are at a higher risk of developing blockages or peripheral vascular diseases. Leg attack is one of the extreme conditions arising from blockages in the vessels of the limbs which can lead to non healing ulcer even limb amputation. Most doctors agree that despite the severity of leg attacks, most cases remain undiagnosed till the last stage due to a lack of awareness of the disease and its symptoms.

Dr. Rajiv Parakh, Vascular Surgeon, Medanta – The Medicity revealed, “An acute leg attack needs urgent medical intervention. If blood supply is not restored within eight hours, the patient could lose his limb.  Just as with a heart attack, a leg attack is the result of artery blockages that are worsened by diabetes, smoking and unhealthy diets. Ballooning and stenting have generally replaced invasive surgery as the first-line treatment for removal of such blockages. Ballooning is the procedure used to open the blood vessel when it is narrowed or blocked and in some cases this is then held open with a stent.”

Since leg attacks can be easily treated in the initial stages with appropriate medicines and simple lifestyle modifications provided the patient approaches a qualified vascular surgeon, early detection and increased awareness can help prevent disabling amputation. It has been medically established that 15% of all diabetics will develop a serious foot problem at some time or the other which can threaten the limb or the life of the individual. Over 45% of diabetics who loose their limbs will die within 5 years of the amputation.

Growing sedentary and stressful urban lifestyles are increasing the incidence of leg attacks which are worsened by diabetes and smoking. However, despite the condition’s severity, the awareness of the Leg Attack remains low among the masses. People with diabetes are at an increased risk of complications from wound healing largely due to the decreased blood-flow their wounds heal slower than in people who do not have the disease. In diabetics, lower limb amputations account for 50% of all non-accident amputations and the rate of lower limb amputations in patients with Diabetes is forty times higher than in people without the affliction.

Source: Business Wire India


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