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Vascular Care Leaders Underscore PAD Risks for Americans Living with Kidney Disease on World Kidney Day

Mar 14, 2019

Americans with CKD are at a higher risk than the general population of developing PAD

WASHINGTON – The CardioVascular Coalition (CVC), a coalition of cardiovascular and endovascular care providers, physicians, and manufacturers created to improve awareness, prevention, and intervention of vascular disease, is urging increased understanding for kidney health and related health conditions, including Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD), in recognition of World Kidney Day.

Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) is the ninth leading cause of death in the United States affecting an estimated 26 million Americans. Research has shown that Americans with CKD are at a higher risk than the general population of developing PAD, which causes narrowing or blockage of the vessels that carry blood from the heart to the legs.  Studies have also shown patients with CKD are less likely to be provided recommended ‘optimal’ PAD care.

PAD is a circulatory condition affecting as many as 18 million Americans. Like CKD, PAD disproportionately impacts minority communities due to the higher prevalence of diabetes and other risk factors. If not properly managed, PAD can lead to non-traumatic lower limb amputations, which data show lead to lower quality of life, increased risk for death and higher healthcare costs.

“Public policies are needed to increase access to PAD diagnosis and intervention, particularly among older Americans dependent on Medicare to access care, and who are often living with multiple comorbidities common across this patient population including diabetes and hypertension,” said Dr. Neil Marwah of National Cardiovascular Partners. “Other important factors impacting both CKD and PAD patient groups are the racial disparities that exist, which show African Americans are at a measurably higher risk for both diseases conditions.”

In fact, data show in regions with larger populations of African Americans living with diabetes, the PAD-related amputation risks are as much as three to four times higher than the national average. Nationally, the amputation rate among African American Medicare patients is nearly three times higher than the rate among other beneficiaries.

The CardioVascular Coalition has been working with the PAD Task Force to advance a comprehensive strategy that combines increased public awareness and robust screening with non-amputation treatment measures and multidisciplinary care. The PAD Task Force has called on the Administration to convene an intragovernmental workgroup to develop a standardized model for amputation reduction. 

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