The Ankle Brachial Index (ABI)

  • The ankle brachial index, or ABI, is a simple, inexpensive, efficient clinic-based test that can accurately diagnose PAD in about 15 minutes.
  • This test can be performed easily during public individual primary care clinic visits.
  • This test compares the blood pressure in the arms with the blood pressure in the ankles. An ankle pressure that is lower than the arm pressure indicates that there is a blockage somewhere in the arteries between the heart and the ankle.
  • The ABI is considered the "gold standard" for determining the presence of PAD and assessing its severity.
  • The procedure can be performed by a physician, nurse, or trained clinic technician in the clinic.
  • An abnormal ABI confirms the diagnosis of PAD. Effective interventions/therapies can then be prescribed. People with PAD are a a significantly increased risk of heart attack, stroke, and disease progression.

Download this ABI Intro (PDF)

The Ankle Brachial Index (ABI) Resources

Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD) Resources