Vascular Health

 

The cardiovascular system is made up of blood, blood vessels and the heart. It is one of the body’s most vital systems, so it is very important to keep it healthy.

Vascular disease, a blood vessel disorder that affects the arteries and veins, is a serious health issue that affects millions of Americans each year. More people die each year from vascular-related diseases than from all cancers combined.

Henry Ford Allegiance Vascular Health focuses on education and prevention and the early detection and treatment of vascular disease. Our vascular laboratory staff provides tests and screenings to determine the cause of symptoms you may be experiencing. Our vascular surgeons and nurse practitioners perform a variety of minimally invasive procedures to treat vascular disease in its varying stages.

We make every effort to provide same-day appointments when needed, so that you can discuss your health concerns as quickly as possible.

Vascular Diseases & Conditions Treated

Henry Ford Allegiance Vascular Health provides treatment of serious vascular diseases and conditions, such as:

The body’s main artery, the aorta, is similar in thickness to a garden hose and runs from the heart to the center of the chest and abdomen. The lower part of this main artery, called the abdominal aorta, supplies blood to the stomach, pelvis and legs. A part of the abdominal aorta wall can thin and weaken, creating a balloon-like bulge called an abdominal aortic aneurysm. When the aneurysm reaches a certain size and is in danger of bursting, a repair is necessary.

The carotids are the major arteries on either side of the neck, which carry blood from the heart to the brain. Plaque (a build-up of cholesterol, fat and other substances) can narrow the wall of these arteries, causing insufficient blood flow to the brain—a risk factor for stroke.

Deposits of red blood cells and clotting elements in the blood can build up to a clot in the deep veins, usually in the legs. As it grows, the clot can block blood flow in the vein. It may also break off and move to the lungs, which can be fatal.

Fluid that is normally transported by the lymph system can build up, usually in the arms or legs, and cause the area to swell. This condition, called lymphedema, can range from mild swelling to skin discoloration and a dramatic increase in the size of the affected limb.

The mesenteric arteries take blood from the aorta (the largest artery in the body) and distribute it to a large portion of the intestinal tract. A narrowing or blockage of these arteries restricts blood flow, often causing sudden, severe abdominal pain, especially after eating. Other symptoms may include unexpected weight loss, constipation, flatulence, nausea and vomiting.

Deposits of fat and other materials in the arteries of the legs can slow the flow of blood to the cells of the body and cause organ failure.

This term refers to an inflammation of a vein, usually in the leg, that often comes with blood clots. The condition may resolve itself or become life threatening.

The popliteal artery supplies blood to the knee joint, thigh and calf. A part of the artery’s wall can weaken and stretch like a balloon (aneurysm) to the breaking point. This condition requires vascular surgery to restore blood flow to the knee and leg.

This blockage of an artery of the lungs is caused by an embolus, which is a lump of material in the blood that may be a blood clot, fat, an air bubble, bone marrow or a piece of tissue. This prevents the proper flow of nourishing blood to an area of the lungs, which can lead to lung damage and, in severe cases, death.

Blood vessels normally narrow in response to cold temperatures or emotional stress. Raynaud’s disease is an abnormal response to these triggers. The narrow blood vessels make it difficult to get enough blood flow to the fingers ears, nose or lips, causing skin discoloration from white to blue to red, as well as throbbing and tingling.

A medical condition in which the kidneys stop functioning normally. Renal failure can be chronic (which slowly gets worse) or acute (occurring suddenly, because of injury to the kidneys caused by lack of blood flow, surgical complications, blood clots or certain medications).

The thoracic aorta is the section of the body’s main artery (aorta) where it passes through the chest. An area of thoracic aorta wall can become thin and weak (aneurysm) and begin to balloon toward the breaking point. A surgical repair is necessary, because a break in the aorta is often fatal.

When the valves in a vein are faulty, blood can move backwards and pool into nearby tissue. This can cause a venous stasis ulcer, which is a wound on the surface of the skin, usually on the legs.

Damaged valves can cause veins close to the surface of the skin to become swollen and ropy (varicose). This can happen anywhere in the body, most commonly in the legs. Varicose veins range from being simply a cosmetic issue to becoming severe and painful.

Managing your diabetes by keeping your blood sugar levels under control helps to reduce your risk of having a stroke.