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Vascular Disease

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Vascular disease is a collective name for any disease that affects the circulatory system. The circulatory system includes the veins that carry deoxygenated blood to the heart and the arteries that take oxygenated blood from the heart to other areas of the body.

Overview

Vascular diseases include those conditions that affect the arteries, veins as well as the lymph nodes. In some cases, diseases that affect circulation are also included as vascular diseases.

  • When this disease affects the veins it is called as venous disease.
  • When it affects the arteries it is called as arterial disease

Causes

Vascular diseases are caused due to the inflammation and weakness affecting the circulatory system. This weakness is often caused by the fatty deposits in the blood vessels that occurs over a long period of time. As this condition is usually symptomless, it is often too late to detect the problem. The exact cause of vascular diseases is unknown. However, some of the factors that contribute to the disease include:

  • Genetics or family history of stroke, heart attacks or other vascular disease
  • Obesity
  • High levels of cholesterol
  • Inactive, sedentary lifestyle
  • Stress
  • Hypertension, that is, high blood pressure
  • Unbalanced, unhealthy diet consisting of high levels of fatty, spicy fast foods
  • Diabetes
  • Chronic smoking
  • Alcoholism
  • People who are required to stand or sit for a long time

Types of Vascular Diseases

There are many types of vascular diseases. Let us enlist some of these conditions to know which come under vascular diseases:

Diagnosis

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Diagnosis is very difficult in case of vascular diseases. This is because the disease is initially symptomless. And when one does begin to show signs, they vary a lot in different individuals. Thus, the doctor will ask in detail about family history and patient symptoms. After carrying out a physical examination, he may suggest a few tests and procedures. These tests include:

Treatment and Prevention

The treatment for vascular disease depends on the type of condition one is suffering from. Apart from the medical and surgical treatments, one is advised certain health tips to reduce the risk of getting vascular disease or keeping the condition under control. These tips include:

  • Eating a healthy diet and reducing the fat intake
  • Eating a low salt and sugar diet
  • Reduce weight and overcoming obesity
  • Quit smoking
  • Using a statin medication and following a strict diet regime to reduce cholesterol levels.
  • Keeping the high blood pressure in check
  • Maintaining blood sugar levels, especially in case of diabetics
  • Exercising and living an active life, instead of being a couch potato

This is some information on vascular disease. These conditions can prove to be fatal, if not treated sooner. Thus, make sure one undergoes regular physical checkup for early detection and controlling any disease detected.

Written by: Saptakee sengupta
Date last updated: February 25, 2015