Peripheral Arterial Disease: Exercise Is MedicineTM

Document Type

Peer-Reviewed Article

Publication Date



Exercise Science


LEARNING OBJECTIVE: Peripheral arterial disease (PAD) significantly affects quality of life, particularly when doing activities such as walking and climbing stairs. In addition, persons with PAD have an increased risk for heart disease, stroke, and limb amputations. This article will summarize PAD, address exercise benefits specific to the disease, and discuss exercise training for those with PAD in both the clinical and the health and fitness setting.

Peripheral arterial disease is a debilitating disease that can be effectively managed with medications and regular exercise and physical activity. Although exercise results can vary, improved walking ability, less claudication, enhanced functional abilities, reduced risk of limb amputation, and lower risk of cardiovascular disease are achievable benefits from proper exercise training.