What is a Segmental Arterial Pressure Study and what does it do?
People who experience leg pain or numbness when walking or exercising, the physician may order a Segmental Arterial Pressure Study. This test measures the blood flow in various areas of the upper and lower extremities. It can reveal possible issues with blood flow within the lower extremities. Reduced blood flow in the lower extremities can be cause by plaque buildup in the blood vessels in those extremities. This study will help the physician determine if reduce blood flow is the reason a person is experiencing various symptoms when walking or exercising.
Who performs the test?
The test is performed by a licensed Respiratory Therapist.
Where does it take place?
At Jackson Hospital in the Cardiology Department.
How long does it take?
This test can take 30 minutes to 1 hour.
What can I do to make it a success?
- Please be sure to bring your doctor’s orders with you the day of your test. Allow 15 minutes to register.
- Wear comfortable clothing and shoes that can be removed easily (we must be able to place blood pressure cuffs on your arms and legs).
- Please do not use lotions or oils on the legs and arms prior to the test.
What should I do before the exam?
- There are no special dietary restrictions for this study.
- You should not smoke or participate in strenuous activities for 24 hours before the test.
- You should take any medications as you normally would.
What happens during the exam?
- You will be asked to remove your pants, socks and shoes and put on a hospital gown.
- You will be lying flat during the test. The technologist will place a series of blood pressure cuffs on your thigh and leg.
- The cuffs are inflated and with the use of a Doppler your blood pressure will measured at different areas of the thigh and leg. During this time, you may feel some slight discomfort for a brief moment. There should not be any pain. Please let the technologist know if you start experiencing and significant amount pain.
- The doctor may order this exam with exercise. Be prepared to walk for a short amount of time on a treadmill. Blood pressures will be taken again after exercising on the treadmill. This will give the doctor measurements before and after exercise.
What should I do after the exam?
You may resume normal activity after your study. Your physician should have your test results in 3 to 5 business days.