What is Subclavian Artery Disease?

Plaque build up can occur anywhere in the body including the artery supplying the arm (subclavian artery). When significant blockage occurs in this artery, there is decreased blood flow to the muscles of the arm and hand resulting in symptoms.

What are the Symptoms of Subclavian Artery Disease?

Symptoms of subclavian artery disease may include arm: 

  • Pain/discomfort (often with use or elevation)

  • Fatigue (often with use or elevation)

  • Numbness

  • Cool and/or pale hand

  • Decreased blood pressure in one arm compared to the other

  • Dizziness/visual changes (due to steal from the brain via the vertebral artery)

How is Subclavian Artery Disease Diagnosed?

Testing for subclavian artery disease may include:

What is the Treatment for Subclavian Artery Disease?

Treatment for subclavian artery disease includes smoking cessation (when appropriate), additional risk factor modification to reduce likelihood of more plaque build up (similar to management for coronary artery disease), and when necessary to restore blood flow, stent placement or bypass surgery.



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