What is the role of pharmacologic therapy in the treatment of peripheral arterial occlusive disease (PAOD)?

Updated: Sep 12, 2019
  • Author: Josefina A Dominguez, MD; Chief Editor: Vincent Lopez Rowe, MD  more...
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Daily aspirin is recommended for overall cardiovascular care. Standard dosages range from 81 to 325 mg/day, but no consensus has been reached on the most effective dose.

Pentoxifylline shows promise. Numerous randomized trials have documented modest improvements in walking distance in pentoxifylline treatment groups as compared with placebo treatment groups. Treatment may take as long as 2-3 months to produce noticeable results.

The use of clopidogrel bisulfate and enoxaparin sodium in the treatment of PAOD is increasing; however, further research is needed to establish clinical efficacy.

Cilostazol has shown increasing promise in the treatment of intermittent claudication. Several randomized studies have found it to have a beneficial effect on walking distances, increasing both the distance before the onset of claudication pain and the distance before exercise-limiting symptoms become intolerable (ie, the maximal walking distance).

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