As vascular specialists, interventional radiologists see first hand the damage that smoking causes to the arteries (10 million Americans suffer from hardening of the arteries in the legs) and the accompanying leg plain that many smokers suffer.
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Carolyn Gorman: Walking is a simple pleasure Russell smith now save his each day after years of smoking he began to develop debilitating leg pain. Russell smith: It wasn't until I started experiencing severe leg pain and life threatening leg pain that I've felt I had to do something about my smoking it was no longer an option. Carolyn Gorman: An interventional radiologist diagnosed Smith with PVD, Peripheral Vascular Disease or hardening of the arteries in the legs, a disease cause by atherosclerosis, which is caused by smoking. Dr. Ted Chambers, MD: Peripheral Vascular disease does cause leg pain and problem with a leg and increased to the point where people's pain will increase and progressively shorter distances of walking eventually to the point where they have pain at rest. Carolyn Gorman: Smith then learned that his leg pain it wasn't all he needed to worry about. Dr. Ted Chambers, MD: They lead to gangrene and lose of the limb, but there is also association with coronary disease and stroke. Carolyn Gorman: Diagnosis for PVD is simple, a blood pleasure test that compares the pressure in the ankle to the pressure in the arm known as an ankle-brachial index test is all it takes. For the 10 million Americans suffering with PVD treatment includes exercise and stopping smoking. Some also need medication or angioplasty in the leg to reopen the artery and improve blood flow. For Russell Smith the resolution to stop smoking and seek treatment resulted in the best New Year, one with his family. Russell smith: I'm able to go to the mall with my son. I'm able to go to the great falls with my wife and walk around the mountains. I'm able to enjoy much freer, healthier, happier lifestyle. Carolyn Gorman: This is Carolyn Gorman.

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