Press Release

For Immediate Release
Sep 27, 2013
Contact : Donna Sellmann, Manager, Public Relations  
732-836-3279
dsellmann@meridianhealth.com

Meridian Health Centers for Wound Healing Raise Awareness of Peripheral Arterial Disease

Offers tips on risk factors and symptoms for condition with the same five-year mortality rate as breast and colorectal cancer  

Neptune, NJ - Peripheral Arterial Disease (P.A.D.) narrows leg arteries, reduces blood flow and affects between eight and 12 million people in the United States. While the majority of people with the condition don’t know they have it, they have the same five-year mortality rate as those with breast and colorectal cancer.

Meridian Health’s Centers for Wound Healing (which includes hyperbaric oxygen treatment), a member of the Healogics™ network, treat chronic wounds with underlying conditions of the disease, as well as performs non-invasive tests for P.A.D. The centers counsel patients on how to manage the illness which can, if left untreated, lead to lower limb amputation and death.

One in every 20 Americans older than 50 has P.A.D. and those with the condition are at increased risk of heart attack and stroke, making them six times more likely to die within 10 years than those without the disease. Often there are no symptoms, so it is important that people be aware of factors that put them more at risk.

In addition to chronic wounds on the toes, feet or legs, the experts at the Centers for Wound Healing give the following risk factors and symptoms of P.A.D.:

  • Those who smoke or have a history of smoking have up to four times greater risk.

  • African-Americans are more than twice as likely to have P.A.D. as their white counterparts.

  • One in every three diabetics over the age of 50 is likely to have the disease.

  • People with high blood pressure, high blood cholesterol or a personal history of vascular disease, heart attack, or stroke are at greater risk.

  • As you get older the risk increases since the disease develops gradually.

  • While some people dismiss it as a sign of aging, nearly everyone with P.A.D. is unable to walk as fast or as far as they could before.

  • A typical sign is experiencing fatigue or a heaviness in the limbs or cramping in the buttocks, thigh or calf after walking or climbing stairs and then feeling better after resting.

  • Leg or foot pain may cause trouble sleeping for those with P.A.D.

  • The skin of the feet may change color and become pale or turn blue.

  • Toenails that do not grow as well as before and decreased hair growth on the toes and legs may be another symptom.

Meridian Health has Centers for Wound Healing at several convenient locations in Monmouth and Ocean counties.

The centers offer hyperbaric oxygen therapy to increase the blood flow and reintroduce the body's innate ability to heal. Other treatments may include making lifestyle changes to modify diet or add an exercise regimen, physical therapy, medications and, in extreme cases, surgery may be needed.

For more information on managing P.A.D. and treating chronic or infected wounds, contact the Center for Wound Healing nearest you:

Bayshore Community Hospital – 732-497-1611
735 North Beers Street, Holmdel (just down the street from the hospital on the corner of North Beers Street and Holmdel Road)

Jersey Shore University Medical Center – 732-776-4430
1945 Route 33, Neptune, NJ 07753

Ocean Medical Center - 732-840-3399
425 Jack Martin Boulevard, Brick, NJ 08724

Southern Ocean Medical Center - 609-978-3371
1140 Route 72 West, Manahawkin, NJ 08050

About Meridian Health
Meridian Health is a leading not-for-profit health care organization in New Jersey, comprising Jersey Shore University Medical Center and K. Hovnanian Children's Hospital in Neptune, Ocean Medical Center in Brick, Riverview Medical Center in Red Bank, Southern Ocean Medical Center in Manahawkin, Bayshore Community Hospital in Holmdel, and Meridian Partner Companies that include home health services, skilled nursing and rehabilitation centers, ambulatory care, ambulance services, and outpatient centers. Meridian Health has consistently been rated among the top performing health systems in New Jersey for clinical quality, is one of the FORTUNE "100 Best Companies to Work For", and is the recipient of numerous state and national recognitions for patient care and nursing excellence, including the distinction of being the first health system in the country to receive Magnet designation for nursing.

About Healogics, Inc.
Headquartered in Jacksonville, Fla., Healogics is the nation’s largest provider of advanced wound care services. Healogics and its affiliated companies manage more than 500 Wound Care Centers® in the nation and see nearly 200,000patients per year through a connected network of centers, partner hospitals, academic medical centers, patients and families. Leveraging its scale and experience, Healogics utilizes an evidence-based systematic approach to chronic wound healing in treating an underserved and growing patient population. For more information, please visit www.healogics.com.