PVD: Know the Dangers ( Diabetes )
Peripheral vascular disease (PVD) â€” disease in the blood vessels outside of the heart â€” is common in people with diabetes. PVD develops when the fats in your blood, such as cholesterol and triglycerides, can build up on the walls of your arteries, thickening and hardening them. Diabetes often causes an increase in blood fats, which can lead to the thickening process. This is why your health care provider is concerned about checking your cholesterol and triglyceride levels, two important blood fats. If you have high cholesterol or high triglycerides, you may be asked to change your diet and to try to lose some weight. You may need to take medication to help control high cholesterol or high triglycerides. It is important to control blood fats because the thickening of the arteries that leads to PVD can also cause heart attacks and strokes. You are at greater risk for these illnesses when you have diabetes.