ST. LOUIS - September is Vascular Disease Awareness Month and a local cardiologist and vascular physician, Raffi Krikorian MD., of Virtue Vein and Lymphatic Center, is working to educate people about these common and potentially dangerous conditions.
Vascular disease refers to any condition that affects your circulatory system - the vast network of arteries and veins in your body. High blood pressure is by far the most common type of vascular disease, affecting nearly half of all adults in the United States – roughly 100 million. Peripheral artery disease (PAD), atherosclerosis, and carotid artery disease are other vascular diseases that impact health. Dr. Krikorian said many of these diseases can escalate and become serious if left undetected, which is why vascular screenings are so important.
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“Vascular screenings are a simple way to help prevent issues that could put your life at risk,” said Dr. Krikorian. “The screenings involve a painless ultrasound that checks the health of your blood vessels. It looks for the buildup of fatty deposits that can narrow your blood vessels and restrict blood flow. It’s important to be screened if you have any risk factors as many of these conditions can become critical if left untreated.”
Dr. Krikorian recommends vascular screening every 2-3 years beginning at age 50 or sooner for those with a genetic risk factor. Although vascular disease can affect anyone, certain conditions, such as obesity and Type II diabetes, also contribute to risks and complications. Other common risk factors include age, obesity, pregnancy, lack of exercise, and smoking.
After receiving a diagnosis from a healthcare provider, Dr. Krikorian said vascular disease can often be treated by medications, non-surgical procedures such as angioplasty, stenting, and vein ablation, or in some cases, lifestyle changes.
Virtue Vein and Lymphatic Center has six locations throughout Southwest Missouri and Illinois, including its flagship location at 3760 South Lindbergh Blvd, Suite 101 in St. Louis. With 25 years of experience in this field, Dr. Krikorian is one of only a few board-certified cardiologists throughout the St. Louis region to also practice in vascular, venous, and lymphatic health. The private practice specializes in offering its patients cutting-edge solutions to their unique vein problems. For more information about Virtue Vein and Lymphatic Center, go to www.VirtueVein.com or call 314-849-0923.