Hypertensive Vascular Disease Versus Peripheral Vascular Disease: Considerations for the Patient

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Hypertensive Vascular Disease Versus Peripheral Vascular Disease

Both hypertensive and peripheral vascular disease can lead to several serious and even deadly health complications. These complications may often include increased risks of heart attack and stroke. In addition to this, some of the symptoms of both of these conditions are quite similar, as well as the risk factors. However, there are actually quite a few differences in these two vascular diseases. This may include the causes, treatments and medical interventions and the prognosis for the patient. As a matter of fact, peripheral vascular disease is considered the most commonly occurring disease in the arteries.

Risk Factors

There are multiple risk factors associated with both hypertensive and peripheral vascular disease. This may include pre-existing health conditions, genetic predisposition and lifestyle choices. For example, regular exercise, not smoking and eating healthier can reduce the risks associated with both conditions. Although hypertensive and peripheral disease can strike at almost any age, older persons, usually over the age of fifty and males are generally deemed higher risk for peripheral vascular disease. Those with conditions such diabetes and high triglycerides are at elevated risks for both conditions. Another important consideration is that high blood pressure, the cause of hypertensive vascular diseases, actually contributes to the incidence of peripheral vascular disease and the two may occur simultaneously.

Comparison and Contrast of Causes

Hypertensive vascular disease is caused by damage that has occurred to blood vessels due to the increased pressure within the walls as a result of high blood pressure. On the other hand, peripheral vascular disease can be caused by a variety of different factors. This may include blood clots, injury to the blood vessel, infection, inflammation and diabetes. However, the most common cause of peripheral vascular disease is peripheral artery disease, which is a result of atherosclerosis, or hardening of the arteries caused by the build up of plaque. Although blood pressure can play a role in the progression of peripheral damage, it is usually only a contributing factor.

Other Important Factors to Consider

There are a few things to keep in mind when it comes to hypertensive vascular disease versus peripheral vascular disease. Terms are often used interchangeably with other synonyms to describe the same condition. For example, peripheral artery disease or just (PAD), may be commonly called vascular disease as well. Treatment for vascular disease almost always emphasizes on avoiding a potential stroke or heart attack. This means keeping blood flowing throughout the arteries. In some cases, changes in lifestyle alone will not be sufficient. Medications and/or surgery may be treatment options, depending on the severity of the condition. When talking to your physician about the implications for these diseases, it is important that you clarify the information. This is only meant to serve as a guide and should not replace medical advice from a licensed physician.


Hypertensive Heart Disease. Medline Plus Medical Encyclopedia. Updated 22, June 2010. Viewed 29, November 2010. https://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000163.htm

Peripheral Artery Disease. WebMD. 2005-2010. Viewed 29, November 2010. https://www.webmd.com/heart-disease/peripheral-vascular-disease