Normally, the walls of your hollow, tube-shaped arteries are smooth and elastic. Atherosclerosis occurs when the lining of your arteries deteriorates and thickens with plaque deposits and is commonly known as peripheral vascular disease (PVD) or peripheral arterial disease (PAD). Atherectomy may be considered when a calcified plaque has formed in one of the peripheral arteries that cannot be treated with stenting.
This procedure literally scrapes the plaque from the walls of your arteries. By inserting a special catheter with a rotating tip, your doctor removes the plaque to allow better blood flow through your arteries.