Obliterating Arteriopathy of the Lower Limbs

Obliterating Arteriopathy of the Lower Limbs

Obliterating arteriopathy of the lower limbs is a form of peripheral artery disease that affects arteries of the lower part of the body. It is characterized by a severe narrowing and hardening of the arteries which increases the risk of a person of developing other health issues such as angina, heart attack, strokes, and kidney failure.

The condition occurs most commonly in individuals above the age of 65, however there is a chance that younger people may also suffer from this condition. Studies have shown that some genetic factors may be involved in the development of this condition.

Although this condition can’t be eradicated completely, there are several treatment methods which can help control the symptoms and reduce the likelihood of complications.

How Is It Diagnosed?

Obliterating arteriopathy of the lower limbs is diagnosed following a physical examination, medical history and imaging tests such as X-ray, radiation angiography, computed tomography angiography, or Doppler ultrasound of the affected area.

What Are The Treatment Options?

The aim of the treatment is to reduce symptoms, improve the quality of life, and reduce the risk of stroke or heart attack. The treatment may include medications, lifestyle changes, and dietary changes. The most common medications used to treat obliterating arteriopathy of the lower limbs are as follows:

  • Antiplatelets - to reduce the risk of stroke and heart attack.
  • ACE inhibitors- to improve blood flow.
  • Blood thinners- to reduce the risk of further blood clots
  • Cholesterol-lowering medications- to reduce levels of bad cholesterol.

When medications are not sufficient to provide relief, surgery may be recommended to improve blood flow. This includes angioplasty, which is a procedure that opens narrowed blood vessels, and bypass surgeries, which use a blood vessel from another part of the body to improve blood flow.

In addition to medication and surgery, lifestyle changes may also be recommended. These include regular physical activity, quitting smoking, and maintaining healthy body weight.

What Are The Potential Complications?

Obliterating arteriopathy of the lower limbs can cause several complications if left untreated, such as:

  • Leg ulcers
  • Gangrene
  • Stroke
  • Kidney failure
  • Heart attack


Obliterating arteriopathy of the lower limbs is a serious health condition which can cause some serious health issues if left untreated. Treatment options are available to manage the condition, but the best way to reduce the chance of developing the condition is to adopt a healthy lifestyle, avoid smoking, and maintain a healthy weight.