Bypass Grafts of Lower Extremity Arteries

Peripheral vascular disease (PVD) also referred to as peripheral artery disease is the most common disease which occurs when the blood vessels that supply blood to the limbs and other organs of our body are partially or completely blocked due to plaque build-up.

This condition is called atherosclerosis. Plaque forms out of the substances present in blood such as fat, cholesterol, calcium and fibrous tissue. These plaque deposits gradually harden and narrow down the arteries. This limits the oxygen-rich blood supply to the parts of your body. The most commonly affected blood vessels because of PVD are the arteries of legs.

Surgery for PVD

Bypass Grafting: This surgery is done if the blood flow in your leg is obstructed. In this procedure, a graft (blood vessel taken from another part of your body or an artificial tube) is placed to bypass the blood flow around the blockage.

Angioplasty and Stenting: Angioplasty is a procedure done to restore blood flow through a blocked artery. It involves passage of a catheter with a deflated balloon at its tip into a blocked artery. The balloon is then inflated in order to displace the plaque outwards. This restores the blood flow by widening the artery. In addition, a stent may be placed in the artery to keep it open after angioplasty is done.

Atherectomy: Atherectomy is a procedure in which a catheter with a small cutting device is passed into the blocked artery. This device breaks up the plaque into bits which are washed away with the bloodstream or through the catheter.