If you are suspected of having lower extremity arterial disease such as atherosclerosis, one or more tests may be used including:
- Pulse Examination: This is the primary assessment of the circulation.
- Arterial Blood Pressures: Using an ultrasound stethoscope (Doppler), the blood pressure in your arms and legs is measured, then compared. This test gives the vascular surgeon a general assessment of the severity of the lower extremity arterial disease.
- Duplex Scanning: This test is useful for detecting blockages in an artery and measuring the size of the artery. It may also be used to measure the size of a vein that may be used as a bypass, a means of re-routing blood flow around a blocked or occluded area.
- Magnetic Resonance Angiography (MRA): This test is also useful for imaging extremity vessels.
- Angiogram: Tests in this category involve the injection of a contrast dye directly into your arteries under X-ray guidance.