Thousands in Phoenix May Be Affected by Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD)

April is National Minority Health Month

PHOENIX--()--PAD is the biggest disease that most people have never heard about. Up to a staggering 18 million Americans1 suffer from PAD, a potentially life-threatening disease. As many as 68,500 people in the Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale metro area have PAD,2,3 a condition where plaque builds up along blood vessel walls, narrowing the arteries and reducing blood flow to the legs and feet.

“Explaining Racial Disparities in Amputation Rates for the Treatment of Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD) using Decomposition Methods”

There are more than 160,000 PAD-related amputations in the U.S. each year, so when left untreated, PAD can lead to amputation.4 And the rate of amputation for African-American and Hispanic-Americans with PAD is higher than for white Americans.

  • African-Americans are twice as likely to be amputated as a result of advanced PAD as Caucasians.5
  • Hispanics receive an amputation for PAD at a rate 50 percent higher than Caucasians.5

A new study published in the Journal of Racial and Ethnic Health Disparities, “Explaining Racial Disparities in Amputation Rates for the Treatment of Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD) using Decomposition Methods,” concludes that compared to Caucasians, African-Americans and Hispanic-Americans have less access to limb-saving PAD procedures because they are being admitted to the hospital for treatment when they are sicker and more likely on an emergency basis.5

Some studies suggest that African-Americans may not feel the symptoms as early as Caucasians, therefore they do not seek treatment as early.6 A simple screening test, called an ankle-brachial index (ABI), in which the blood pressure in a person’s ankle is compared to the blood pressure in the arm, can be used to identify PAD in people who are at risk.

A national campaign, Take A Stand Against Amputation, is seeking to raise awareness of PAD and to encourage people with symptoms to talk to a doctor about the disease. The campaign website,, contains useful information about the disease, its risk factors, symptoms and treatment options. The campaign is gaining visibility in the Phoenix area.

About National Minority Health Month
The U.S. Office of Minority Health's theme for this year's National Minority Health Month is Bridging Health Equity Across Communities. Throughout April, the office will work with its partners to raise awareness about efforts across health, education, justice, housing, transportation and employment sectors to address the factors known as the social determinants of health – environmental, social and economic conditions that impact health. More information is available on the office's website,

About Take A Stand Against Amputation
Take A Stand Against Amputation is sponsored by Cardiovascular Systems, Inc., headquartered in St. Paul, Minn. offers educational information about peripheral artery disease (PAD). The website includes a PAD risk factor checklist people can use to talk to health care professionals to help assess if they have PAD or are at risk. The website also provides a tool to help people find a physician or surgeon who is experienced using CSI’s device to treat indicated patients with PAD. For physicians and health care clinics, the website offers free education tools they can download, print and distribute to their patients.

About Cardiovascular Systems, Inc.
Cardiovascular Systems, Inc., based in St. Paul, Minn., is a medical device company focused on developing and commercializing innovative solutions for treating vascular and coronary disease. For more information, visit the company’s website at

1Schiavetta A, et al. Stem Cells Translational Medicine. 2012; 1:572-578. and Sage Report 2010.
2Stay in Circulation. Peripheral Artery Disease. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NIH) Accessed April 4, 2017.
3Calculation based on figure 1 in 20 Americans over 50 have PAD; Population of Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale metro area over 50 is estimated by the census to be 1,370,862 in 2015. Resulting in 68,543 affected by PAD. U.S. Census Bureau, Population Division.
Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Selected Age Groups by Sex for the United States, States, Counties and Puerto Rico Commonwealth and Municipios: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2015. Released June 2016.
U.S. Census Bureau, 2011-2015 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates. Accessed April 4, 2017.
4Allie et al. J Endovasc Ther. 2009 Feb; 16 Suppl 1:134-46.
5Mustapha, J.A., Fisher, B.T., Rizzo, J.A. et al. J. Racial and Ethnic Health Disparities (2017). doi:10.1007/s40615-016-0261-9.
6Criqui, M. & Aboyans, V; Circ Res. 2015;116:1509-1526.


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Karen Vance, 513-459-9064
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