Exercise improves leg pain caused by arterial disease

Feb 02, 2009

Patients with leg pain caused by arterial disease may be able to forego treatment of the affected artery by participating in hospital-supervised exercise, according to a new study published in the February issue of Radiology.

Intermittent claudication is a painful leg condition affecting some patients with peripheral arterial disease. Various treatments are available, including drug therapy or endovascular revascularization, a minimally invasive technique that widens and restores blood flow to the affected artery.

"The results from our clinical trial demonstrate that after six and 12 months, patients with intermittent claudication benefited equally from either revascularization or supervised exercise," said the study's lead author, Sandra Spronk, Ph.D., researcher in the Department of Epidemiology and Radiology at Erasmus MC, University Medical Center in Rotterdam, Netherlands. "However, improvement is more immediate following revascularization."

For the study, 151 patients with intermittent claudication were randomly assigned to undergo revascularization or hospital-supervised exercise. Supervised exercise consisted of 30-minute, semi-weekly sessions of walking on a treadmill. Follow-up was performed after six and 12 months.

The patients who had undergone revascularization showed more immediate improvement. However, no significant differences were observed between the two groups after six months or 12 months with functional capacity and quality of life scores increasing for all patients.

"Revascularization is increasingly being performed as a first line of treatment," Dr. Spronk said. "This study emphasizes that all patients with intermittent claudication should initially be treated with exercise training, and that invasive procedures should be considered only if symptoms fail to improve."

Source: Radiological Society of North America

Explore further: Hundreds of thousands of Ebola vaccine doses could reach Africa by mid-2015: WHO

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Who owns space?

7 minutes ago

The golden age of planetary exploration had voyagers navigating new sea routes to uncharted territory. These territories were then claimed in the name of the monarchs who had financed the expeditions. All ...

New oscillator for low-power implantable transcievers

25 minutes ago

Arash Moradi and Mohamad Sawan from Polytechnique Montreal in Canada discuss their new low-power VCO design for medical implants. This oscillator was implemented to provide the frequency deviation of frequency-shift-keying ...

Should the Japanese give nuclear power another chance?

37 minutes ago

On September 9, 2014, the Japan Times reported an increasing number of suicides coming from the survivors of the March 2011 disaster. In Minami Soma Hospital, which is located 23 km away from the power plant, ...

Recommended for you

First case of Ebola confirmed in Mali

5 hours ago

Mali's health ministry on Thursday said the country had its first confirmed case of Ebola after a two-year-old girl who had recently been in Guinea tested positive for the virus.

User comments : 0