Intermittent claudication is the first and mildest manifestation of peripheral arterial disease, caused by the atherosclerotic process of progressive narrowing of one or more of the arteries of the peripheral circulation.1 If the arterial system fails, it results in a progressive oxygen debt, experienced by the patient as cramping muscle pain during walking or other physical activity, which forces the patient to pause. The incidence of intermittent claudication increases with age, especially among men, with an annual incidence rate of 0.7%, 3.9%, and 10.6% among 35-44 year, 45-54 year, and 55-64 year old men respectively.2 In women, the incidence rates are approximately 50% lower than in men.2 The development of intermittent claudication is accelerated by the same cardiovascular risk factors as known for other expressions of atherosclerotic disease (i.e. coronary heart disease and cerebro-vascular disease). These risk factors are smoking, diabetes mellitus, hypertension, and hyperlipidaemia.

Hunink, Prof. Dr. M.G.M. (promotor), Pattynama, Prof. Dr. P.M.T. (promotor), Biomedic Nederland B.V., Astellas Pharma B.V., Radiometer A/S, Netherlands Heart Foundation, Erasmus Medical Centre, Rotterdam
P.M.T. Pattynama (Peter) , M.G.M. Hunink (Myriam)
Erasmus University Rotterdam
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

Spronk, S. (2008, January 16). Management of patients with intermittent claudication. Retrieved from