The ABI test is used to detect poor circulation in the lower legs caused by clogged arteries. “Peripheral Arterial Disease,” or PAD, reduces the flow of blood to the lowest part of the body and creates a risk of heart disease, aortic aneurysms and stroke. It is a condition similar to coronary artery disease, which restricts the flow of blood to the heart, and carotid artery disease, which restricts the flow of blood to the brain.
People with PAD are at increased risk for heart disease and strokes. PAD can also be an indicator of diabetes, hypertension and other conditions.
The ABI test is simple. It uses uses a standard blood pressure cuff and a special ultrasound stethoscope called a Doppler. The pressure in the ankle is compared to the pressure in your arm to determine how well the blood is flowing and whether additional testing is needed.
Early detection of peripheral arterial disease can help prevent amputation, heart attack and stroke.
Peripheral Arterial Disease of the arteries that affects 10 million Americans. It can affect anyone regardless of age but is most common in men and women over the age of 50. Over the age of 65 it affects as much as 20 percent of the population.