On August 1, the Senate unanimously approved the resolution I introduced with my colleague, Senator Byron Dorgan (D-N.D.), recognizing September 2007 as National Peripheral Arterial Disease Awareness Month.  As Co-Chair of the Congressional Heart Attack and Stroke Coalition, I'm very pleased that all of our Senate colleagues want to join us in calling attention to health problems caused by narrowing of the arteries.  Heart attacks, strokes and other accelerated health problems can occur if peripheral arterial disease (P.A.D.) is left unchecked.

The survival rate for individuals with undetected peripheral arterial disease is worse than the outcome for many other serious diseases, including many common cancers; less than half of individuals with peripheral arterial disease are aware of their diagnoses.

Better educational efforts can increase awareness about the disease which, estimates say, afflicts between eight and twelve million Americans, many of them African-Americans.

During September, I encourage organizations and individuals to observe National Peripheral Arterial Disease Awareness Month with appropriate programs and activities.  For more information, please go to: http://www.padcoalition.org.