The vascular system is made up of arteries and veins. The arteries bring oxygenated blood from the heart to the different parts of the body and the veins return the blood to the heart. As one ages the arteries build up plaque, and blockages of the artery can cause less blood flow to the target organ.
Vascular surgeons will work on the blockages of arteries everywhere except the heart and the brain. Diseases like diabetes, obesity, high cholesterol, and high blood pressure all accelerate this process. Smoking and lack of exercise also accelerate blockages in the artery. When the blockages occur in the carotid artery they are known as carotid artery disease, when in the kidney arteries-renal artery disease, when in the legs-peripheral arterial disease. Treatment of arterial disease can include minimally invasive balloon angioplasty, stenting, atherectomy or traditional open bypass or sometimes a combination of both called a hybrid procedure.
Arteries can also grow in size and the wall can become weak and may become prone to rupture which is called aneurysmal disease. Vascular surgeons will treat aneurysms everywhere except around the heart, and in the brain. Aneurysmal disease quite often is asymptomatic, but can be silent killers and therefore are dangerous. Aneurysms can be treated with minimally invasive techniques with a covered stent, or traditional open technique with resection or hybrid procedures.
Venous disease can involve the deep vein system where a clot can form and this is called deep venous thrombosis. Vascular surgeons will treat the veins to remove clot via minimally invasive dissolving, or open surgical techniques. They will also stent a compressed vein to improve circulation and swelling.
Superficial venous disease involves the veins over distending and becoming leaky and are called varicose veins, which can cause pain, tiredness and bleeding and can also be treated with minimally invasive or traditional techniques.
To learn more about each disease state, and treatments AccessCare offers, click on the conditions or treatment tabs.