Atherosclerosis: Analysis of the Disease

Table of Contents

Pain and discomfort in the legs can be associated with a variety of factors. To determine the cause of the pain, it is necessary to study the patient’s history. Secondly, a detailed analysis of all the symptoms needs to be conducted. The purpose of this essay is to review and discuss the situation of Mr. K, a patient, presumably suffering from atherosclerosis.

Causes of the Disease

This disease often remains unidentified for a long time due to the asymptomatic course. Atherosclerosis is a chronic disease of the arteries in which plaque occurs in the form of a variety of substances (“Atherosclerosis,” 2016). The exact cause of this disease is unknown, but several factors contribute to the development of atherosclerosis. Among them are the male gender, smoking, and obesity, which correspond to the patient’s description (Touyz & Delles, 2019). Pathophysiological change is the formation of plaques due to damage to arteries.

The Complications of the Atherosclerosis

Mr. K.’s case corresponds to the so-called peripheral artery disease. This form of the disease occurs when plaque forms in the arteries that supply blood to the arms or legs (“Atherosclerosis,” 2016). An illness manifests itself in numbness and pain in the limbs, which is already observed in the patient. However, one should beware of such complications as severe infections leading to gangrene, as well as arterial thrombosis (“Atherosclerosis,” 2016). The latter complication can, without taking any additional measures, lead to the loss of a limb. Also, a loosened plaque can enter other blood vessels, including coronary and carotid arteries, and cause a heart attack or stroke.

Treatment and Recommendations

General treatment recommendations include lifestyle changes, smoking cessation, and following a healthy diet (“Atherosclerosis,” 2016). Losing weight and stopping smoking can help reduce plaques and slow down the development of atherosclerosis, improving blood circulation in the leg. Besides, doctors may prescribe particular statins to lower cholesterol (“Atherosclerosis,” 2016). Reducing cholesterol is a way to deal with complications, as this procedure reduces the risk of heart attack or stroke. Doctors can prescribe an operation and correct the situation with surgery as well.

Thus, we can conclude that the patient is suffering from atherosclerosis, namely its peripheral form. To correct this situation, Mr. K must, first of all, change his lifestyle. He should stop smoking, eat healthy food, and follow all the doctor’s instructions. In this case, the patient may not need surgery, and after completing the course of treatment, the pain will disappear.

References

Atherosclerosis. (2016). Web.

Touyz, R., & Delles, C. (Eds.). (2019). Textbook of vascular medicine. Cham, Switzerland: Springer.

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