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Adventitial Cystic Disease

Adventitial cystic disease is a rare disease that occurs when a cyst filled with a mucus-like substance forms in one of the arteries, most commonly in the popliteal artery, which supplies blood to the knee joint and thigh and calf muscles. The cyst causes the affected artery to become blocked or narrowed.

condition

Definition

Adventitial Cystic DiseaseAdventitial cystic disease is a rare disease that occurs when a cyst filled with a mucus-like substance forms in one of the arteries, most commonly in the popliteal artery, which supplies blood to the knee joint and thigh and calf muscles. The cyst causes the affected artery to become blocked or narrowed.

Causes

Adventitial Cystic DiseaseDoctors are not certain what causes adventitial cystic disease.

Risk

The disease is most likely to occur in young and middle-aged men.

Symptoms

  • Sudden calf cramps
  • Leg pain
diagnosis

Diagnosis

  • Computed Tomography Angiography (CTA): A powerful CT scanner takes thin X-ray views of the renal arteries while a dye is injected into the arm vein to determine if there are any areas with poor blood flow or narrow arteries.
  • Physical exam: The doctor may check for a pulse in the foot and popliteal artery while the knee is flexed – if the doctor cannot feel a pulse, it may be a sign that the popliteal artery is narrowed. If the doctor cannot feel a foot or popliteal pulse while the leg is straight, it may indicate the presence of a blood clot blocking the popliteal artery.
  • Ultrasound Imaging: Sound waves are used to create an image of the arteries and identify whether the arteries are narrowed or blocked.
treatment

Treatment

Surgery is the most common approach to treating adventitial cystic disease. If the popliteal artery is narrowed, a surgeon will remove the cyst. If the cyst has caused a complete blockage, the surgeon may remove the cyst and reconstruct the blocked portion of the artery, often by using a blood vessel from elsewhere in the body.

Vascular Screenings

Are You Eligible? 

Just because you don't have symptoms of vascular disease doesn't mean you aren't at risk. We offer screenings every week at Northridge Medical Park.

Eligible patients include:

  • Age 65 or older
  • Age 50 or older with cardiovascular risk factors
  • Adults 45 years or older and an abnormal finding would prompt modification of your lifestyle or medical care
  • Family history of abdominal aortic aneurysm 

Insurance doesn't cover screenings if you aren't experiencing symptoms. The out-of-pocket cost is $99 for all tests.

Find out more (PDF) or call 434.924.5824.

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