What is Ankle Brachial Index (ABI)?
This test is done by measuring blood pressure at the ankle and in the arm while a person is at rest. Some people also do an exercise test. In this case, the blood pressure measurements are repeated at both sites after a few minutes of walking on a treadmill. The ankle-brachial index (ABI) result is used to predict the severity of peripheral arterial disease (PAD). A slight drop in your ABI with exercisemeans that you probably have PAD. This drop may be important, because PAD can be linked to a higher risk of heart attack or stroke.
Who should get this test?
You’re more likely to get PAD as you get older. Even if you don’t have any symptoms, you may want to get the test if you’re 70 or older.
You’re also more likely to have this kind of low-flow problem if you’re 50 or older and you have any of these:
- A history of smoking
- High blood pressure
- High cholesterol
The main thing you may notice is pain in your legs when you walk or climb stairs. They might feel heavy, numb, or weak.
You may also have these symptoms:
- Less hair on your legs than normal
- One leg feels colder
- Skin looks pale or kind of blue
- Sores on your toes, feet, and legs that don’t seem to heal
- Toenails grow more slowly than they once did
- Trouble getting an erection, often in men with diabetes
How do I prepare? Do I need to fast?
No preparation or fasting required. Just bring your LabFinder Order and Insurance Card to your appointment.
When will I receive my results?
Once completed, you will receive your results within 3-5 business days in your LabFinder portal.