This page describes some of the ways that can determine how good the patient's circulation is.
A PPG or Photoplethysmograph is another non-invasive test. Unlike the Doppler, the PPG measures the health of the tiny vessels. It is done by applying a small probe to the tips of a toe. It is painless.
ABI (Ankle-Arm Index, Ankle-Brachial Index)
An ABI or Ankle-Arm Index or Ankle-Brachial Index tests how good the large vessels that head down towards the foot. The patient's blood pressure is taken at each arm and at each ankle, and the ratios are compared. People with poor circulation in the vessels that head towards the foot will have altered ABI's. For example, an ABI of .96 or above is normal. An ABI of .31 to .95 will have pain with activity. An ABI of .25-.3 will have pain at rest. And an ABI under .3 will have a tendency towards gangrene. Most podiatric physicians will generally not perform elective surgery once the ABI nears .75.
Toe pressures are like a blood pressure test for the toes. Like with the ABI, large pressure differences between the toe pressure and the arm pressure signify disease.
Angiography is a study where a dye is injected into a blood vessel and a special X-ray is taken. While blood vessels are typically invisible to X-ray, the dye is visible. Any areas where the vessel is constricted, there is less dye seen on the X-ray. This test may be done when the level of blockage needs to be identified.
We have vascular testing equipment on-site at the Achilles Foot Health Centre.