In a recent book on the diagnosis and treatment of peripheral vascular diseases, an outline classification of diseases and abnormalities of the blood and lymph vessels of the extremities occupies seven and one-half pages.1 From the point of view of prevalence, by far the great majority of these can be grouped under the headings, "Arteriosclerosis Obliterans," "Thromboangiitis Obliterans," "Raynaud's Syndrome," "Varicose Veins" and "Thrombophlebitis."
A patient may complain of discomfort or of pain either on exertion or at rest, of coldness in the extremities and of limitation in his ability to walk. Arteriosclerotic changes are most apt to occur in the older person, particularly the one with diabetes. The initial symptoms in thromboangiitis obliterans usually show themselves before the age of 45 and only in men (with rare exceptions). Raynaud's syndrome is observed most frequently in women. Enlargement, inflammation and thrombosis of veins may involve various etiologic factors.