Peripheral vascular disease is just as serious as its name sounds. A circulatory system problem, peripheral vascular disease can involve the many arteries, veins, and capillaries in the body, except the brain or the heart. And it is a qualifying condition for Massachusetts Social Security Administration (SSA) disability benefits.
Peripheral vascular disease is also known as peripheral artery disease, and is the most common disease involving the arteries. It develops when the arteries become blocked by a condition called arteriosclerosis, or hardening of the arteries.
When the arteriosclerosis affects the heart, it is called coronary heart disease. Peripheral vascular disease has a similar source, but affects the peripheral arteries. This condition:
- Most often affect the arteries in the legs.
- Also often affects the arteries that lead to the kidneys or arms.
- Can affect other body organs.
- Causes symptoms including pain, cold extremities, bluish skin color, stroke, or even gangrene.
- If not caught and treated successfully, can lead to the eventual death of the body part it involves.
- Occurs in about ten million people in the United States; this is about 5 percent of all people over the age of 50.
- Occurs slightly more frequently in men than in women.
- Is more common for smokers and diabetics.
- Tends to be underreported to healthcare professionals—partly because almost 50 percent of sufferers do not have symptoms and partly because patients do not want to face surgery.
- The only way to prevent complications is medical treatment.
If left untreated, or if treatment fails, peripheral artery disease can cause:
- Permanent foot and leg problems including weakness, a tingling sensation, and numbness.
- A burning aching sensation in the legs or feet.
- Gangrene, which happens when a body part does not get enough blood. The end result is amputation.
- Stroke or heart attack.
Suffering from peripheral artery disease can qualify you for SSA disability benefits. If you or a loved one has this disease, or another qualifying condition, and have had to stop working, it would be wise to contact a Massachusetts SSA disability expert.
At Keefe Disability Law in the Boston area, we have helped many people just like you. Give us a call toll free at 888-904-6847. We will be happy to answer your questions.