One in every 20 Americans over the age of 50 has peripheral arterial disease (PAD), according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
Typical symptoms include claudication, a recurring condition that creates discomfort in the lower limbs and can severely limit a person’s ability to walk.
Peripheral arterial disease is also linked to an elevated risk for a heart attack or stroke.
Maryanna Bowers, a 93-year-old Los Altos Hills resident, was diagnosed last year after she complained to her internist about chronic leg pain, especially at night.
The internist referred Bowers to a specialist and vascular surgeon, who began treating her for peripheral arterial disease and implanted stents in both legs.
Bowers said she felt her legs were much stronger after the surgery, but admitted she is more careful when she goes on walks since the intervention.
The video above shares some of her experiences.
(EDITOR’S NOTE: Peninsula Press Reporter Felix Petermann is involved with VascTrac, a Stanford Medicine research and development project, through which he was introduced to Bowers. Peninsula Press is a project of the Stanford Journalism Program but is not affiliated with Stanford Medicine.)