Hardening Of The Arteries Specialist

Vascular Surgery Specialists

Board Certified Vascular and Endovascular Surgeons located in Downtown Phoenix & East Valley, Phoenix, AZ

Hardening of your arteries (atherosclerosis) can cause problems for your health if it’s left untreated. At Vascular Surgery Specialists in Phoenix, Arizona, board-certified vascular and endovascular surgeons offer numerous treatments to widen narrow arteries and reduce your risk of having a stroke or heart attack. Schedule an appointment over the phone or book online today.

Hardening of the Arteries Q & A

What is hardening of the arteries?

Hardening of the arteries, also known as atherosclerosis, occurs when fatty substances build-up in artery walls and harden. Over time, these deposits can narrow or block arteries, restricting blood flow to organs and other tissues. Treatment can reduce your risk of medical problems.

What are the symptoms of atherosclerosis?

Mild atherosclerosis often doesn’t cause any symptoms. Signs and symptoms associated with moderate to severe hardening of the arteries include:

  • Chest pain
  • Chest pressure
  • Numbness or weakness
  • Slurred speech
  • Difficulty speaking
  • Temporary loss of vision
  • Drooping facial muscles
  • Leg pain while walking
  • High blood pressure
  • Kidney failure
  • Heart attack
  • Stroke

The symptoms you experience depend on which arteries become narrow or clogged.

What are the risk factors for hardening of the arteries?

Some factors increase your risk of hardening of the arteries. Examples are:

  • Obesity
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol
  • Diabetes
  • Smoking

Additional risk factors include physical inactivity, poor dietary habits, and a family history of early heart disease.

How does my doctor diagnose atherosclerosis?

To detect atherosclerosis and determine its severity, your provider at Vascular Surgery Specialists reviews your symptoms and medical history. They complete a physical examination and might recommend blood tests, ultrasound, ankle-brachial index, electrocardiogram (EKG), a stress test, angiogram, CT scans, or other diagnostic imaging procedures.

What are my atherosclerosis treatment options?

Your personalized treatment plan for hardening of the arteries depends on the type and severity of your condition. Vascular Surgery Specialists might recommend the following:

Lifestyle changes

Eating a healthy diet, getting regular exercise, managing stress, maintaining a healthy weight, and not smoking are a few healthy lifestyle habits you can adopt to reduce your risk of vascular problems.


Taking certain medications can slow or reverse the effects of atherosclerosis. Your specialist personalizes a medication regimen that best matches your needs.

Surgical procedures

Numerous surgical procedures can widen narrow or blocked blood vessels. Examples include angioplasty and stent placement to widen arteries, endarterectomy to remove fatty deposits from artery walls, fibrinolytic therapy to break apart blood clots, and bypass surgery. 

During bypass surgery, your provider creates a graft bypass using a synthetic tube or vessel from another part of your body. Doing so reroutes blood around a narrow or blocked artery.

Don’t let atherosclerosis go untreated and cause a heart attack or stroke. See the experts at Vascular Surgery Specialists by calling the office or booking an appointment online today.