The Sage Group

In Recognition of National Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD) Awareness Month, THE SAGE GROUP Highlights Gender Disparities in PAD

BEAUFORT, SC September 13, 2023 (BUSINESS WIRE)—According to THE SAGE GROUP, over half  of the 21 million Americans suffering from PAD are women.

“More than twenty years ago we wrote that PAD was underestimated, underdiagnosed and undertreated,” stated Mary L. Yost, President. “Unfortunately, this is still true, particularly for women and especially for Black, Hispanic and Native American women.”

According to Ms. Yost, “PAD is one of the most prevalent female diseases afflicting over 3X more women than breast cancer. Mortality significantly exceeds that of breast cancer. Five-year PAD mortality is 27% in females increasing to 60% for critical limb ischemia (CLI), the most severe form of PAD. This compares with 9% for breast cancer.”

“Yet disease awareness among the public and non-specialist physicians remains low to nonexistent,” Yost observed. “The result is continued underdiagnosis, delayed diagnosis and misdiagnosis, combined with undertreatment in women. Undiagnosed PAD delays treatment until the most severe stages, significantly driving up the risk of amputation and mortality. Diagnostic and treatment disparities are particularly common in Black, Hispanic and Native American females.”

Commenting on the relationship between the Amputation Lottery and gender Yost stated, “The probability of a major amputation depends on who you are and where you live. Amputation varies by age, race, sex, socioeconomic status, hospital volume and geographic location. Women are at higher risk for amputation, especially above-the-knee amputations. Black females have the highest risk for major amputation with a risk that is 7.6X higher than for other females and higher than for Black males. Furthermore, females experience higher mortality after amputation.”

“PAD is not just a leg problem. It is also a heart and a brain problem, particularly for women.” declared Yost. “The risk of cardiovascular events and death is 2X-4X higher in women with PAD. While cardiovascular risk factor treatments are underutilized in all PAD patients, undertreatment of risk factors is more likely in women than men, and even more likely in Black women than White women.”

THE SAGE GROUP, a research and consulting company, specializes in atherosclerotic and venous disease in the lower limbs, including PAD, CLI, intermittent claudication and amputation costs and consequences. The most recent publication focuses on PAD in African Americans. Additional information:


Mary Yost, (404) 520-6652