What is the vascular system? How does it work and why is it important? This month we answer some questions about your vascular system that could help you stay healthy. Understanding your body is essential for treating it well.

What is the vascular system?

The vascular system is the body’s essential network of blood vessels. The system is made up of interconnected arteries and veins. Arteries pump oxygen-rich blood away from the heart, delivering oxygen to the organs and limbs. Veins take the oxygen depleted blood cells back to the heart. The vascular system is essential for overall health and function of the organs and body.

What Is Vascular Disease?

Vascular disease is any health condition that compromises the function of the network of arteries and veins. There are different types of vascular disease. Vascular disease is common and can become very serious if not treated properly.

What are the risk factors for vascular disease?

You are more likely to develop a type of vascular disease if you have a family history of vascular complications, have diabetes or high cholesterol, are pregnant, or obese.

What are the different types of vascular disease?

  • Aortic Disease: the aorta is the largest artery in your body and any insufficiencies or irregularities in the aorta may cause aortic disease.
  • Carotid Artery Disease: occurs when plaque builds inside the carotid arteries, which can cause a stroke.
  • Deep Vein Thrombosis: occurs when a blood clot forms deep in a vein, normally occurring in the legs.
  • Peripheral Artery Disease: is a build up of plaque reducing blood flow.
  • Renal Vascular Disease: affects blood circulation causing damage to the kidneys or high blood pressure.
  • Upper Extremity Vascular Disease: a blockage in the vessels that travel between the chest and the hand.
  • Vascular Pelvic Pain: chronic iliac pain, usually seen in women.

What are the treatment options for vascular disease?

There are a wide range of treatments available for different types of vascular disease. Center for Vascular Medicine offers personalized treatment plans that are tailored to your unique vascular and overall health. Many of our treatment options can be performed in a comfortable outpatient setting at one of our many Maryland locations. Your doctor will discuss treatment options with you so that you may make an informed decision to improve your vascular health. Treatment options include:

  • Stents- A small stent is placed in a collapsed vessel and used to open the passage way to improve blood flow.
  • Angioplasty-  Using a  balloon catheter, the artery is opened by inflating the balloon.
  • Laser Atherectomy-  Using minimally invasive laser technology plaque is removed from the blood vessels.
  • Thrombectomy- A thrombectomy is a surgical procedure to remove an acute clot in a vein or artery of the leg.
  • By-pass Surgery- The surgery will reroute the flow of blood around the blockage to restore proper function to the blood vessel.
  • Genetic Medication Therapy- Genetic medication therapy uses DNA to help generate personalized treatment. The Center for Vascular Medicine is leading the charge in this field, promoting the full integration of the pharmocogenomic process for improved patient outcomes.

How can I schedule a consultation at CVM?

The Center for Vascular Medicine is leading the field of vascular disease, providing comprehensive screening, diagnosis and treatment options. Our talented physicians and clinicians are highly trained to treat all types of vascular disease. If vascular disease is left untreated, more serious medical concerns can develop. If you would like to be screened for vascular disease, schedule an appointment at one of our multiple locations with our experienced vascular team!

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