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About Vascular Disease

Vascular disease occurs when there is an abnormality in a patient's blood vessels (veins and arteries), such as a blockage, or bulging or narrowing of the vessel walls. These abnormalities impact how blood circulates throughout the body, making it a serious and potentially life-threatening condition. Because vascular disease often does not have discernable symptoms, potentially millions of people each year could be suffering from vascular disease without being aware of their condition. The experts at the University of Chicago Medicine can help identify your risk for developing vascular disease, as well as treat and manage a wide range of conditions.

Risk Factors for Vascular Disease

Since vascular disease can impact any part of the body, symptoms will vary depending on the location of the affected vessels. When a patient has a vascular condition, they can experience reduced or obstructed blood flow to the brain, extremities and organs, which can lead to stroke and/or limb loss.

There are several risk factors that could increase your chances of vascular disease. Risk factors for vascular conditions include:

  • High blood pressure
  • Diabetes
  • High cholesterol
  • Obesity
  • Smoking
  • Family history
  • Age, greater than 50


Though not everyone will have symptoms, it is important to be aware of the behaviors that can exacerbate vascular conditions, such as smoking, sedentary lifestyle and an unhealthy diet.

Types of Vascular Disease

As a broad and complex disease, there are several types and variations of vascular conditions. We specialize in the evaluation and medical management of:
Peripheral arterial disease: blockages of the arteries in the legs and abdomen
Aneurysms: expansion or bulging of the arteries
Carotid artery disease and stroke: blockages of the arteries to the brain
Venous disorders: bulging and painful veins

Our surgical specialties include traditional procedures and minimally invasive techniques for the treatment of: