Do vascular health screenings help identify patients with atherosclerosis?

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Vascular health screenings can and do help identify people with atherosclerosis. Atherosclerosis is the development of fatty plaque in the arteries. It is sometimes called "hardening of the arteries."
The problem with atherosclerotic disease is that it is silent. You can't feel it happening. Most of the time you have no idea that your arteries are clogging until something serious, and possibly fatal happens. 
Vascular screenings are available through community-based organizations, as well as through some local hospitals and non-profit organizations. Typically the screenings provided include:
1.  Carotid Artery Screening -- a carotid artery blockage can constrict or stop blood flow to the brain and lead to stroke. The stroke screening visualizes fatty plaque buildup and measures the velocity of blood flow to the brain.
2.  Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD) screening. The Ankle Brachial Index screening checks for PAD, a condition in which the arteries that carry blood to the arms or legs become narrowed or clogged, slowing or stopping the flow of blood. PAD is closely linked to coronary artery disease. Identifying individuals with PAD can help prevent heart attack and stroke.  
3.  Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm screening -- a ballooning of this artery can lead to a ruptured abdominal aorta that generally causes death. This screening scans for enlargements or weak areas in the main blood vessel that carries blood from the heart to the rest of the body.
4.  Blood testing -- Screening includes total cholesterol, LDL, HDL and triglycerides; blood glucose; and high sensitivity C-reactive protein.
5. Atrial Fibrillation is an abnormal heart beat (arrhythmia) that affects the atria - the upper chambers of the heart - and is the most common form of sustained arrhythmia. 2.5 million Americans have been diagnosed with atrial fibrillation, and the condition is more common in adults over the age of 60.
Who Should Be Screened
Typically, men and women age 50 and older and those age 40 and above with a family history of cardiovascular disease or risk factors such as smoking, high blood pressure, obesity, and inactivity are appropriate for screening. The possibility of finding significant vascular disease in younger age groups is much less likely.