Pulmonary Hypertension - Share Your Experience

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Were you or a relative diagnosed with pulmonary hypertension? Please share your experience.

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What is pulmonary hypertension?

The right ventricle pumps blood returning from the body into the pulmonary arteries to the lungs to receive oxygen. The pressures in the lung arteries (pulmonary arteries) are normally significantly lower than the pressures in the systemic circulation. When pressure in the pulmonary circulation becomes abnormally elevated, it is referred to as pulmonary hypertension. This most commonly occurs when the pulmonary venous pressure is elevated, so called pulmonary venous hypertension (PVH). This pressure is transmitted back to the right side of the heart and the pulmonary arteries. The result is elevated pulmonary pressure throughout the pulmonary circulation. Some of this is a direct pressure transmission from the venous system backward and some can result from a reactive constriction of the pulmonary arteries.

Less commonly, pulmonary hypertension results from constriction, or stiffening, of the pulmonary arteries that supply blood to the lungs, so called pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH).

Whether it is PVH or PAH, it becomes more difficult for the heart to pump blood forward through the lungs. This stress on the heart leads to enlargement of the right heart and eventually fluid can build up in the liver and other tissues, such as the in the legs.

Return to Pulmonary Hypertension

See what others are saying

Comment from: Winnie, 0-2 Female (Caregiver) Published: February 26

My son was born at 31 weeks and only kept in his incubator for 24 hours as they said he could breathe on his own. While in his cot they had a monitor inside his bed and the alarm would go of if his breathing was affected. It bleeped often and I pointed that out to the nurses, yet they only took a look at his face and said he was fine. At home 4 months later, my son had heart failure and was diagnosed with pulmonary hypertension. I think if he had been given oxygen he would have been fit and well. I get so upset, as now his life is limited.

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Comment from: Tangerine, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: December 16

I am 39 years old and have pulmonary hypertension. I also have a ventricular septal defect (VSD), tricuspid regurgitation, Hashimoto's and what seems like some mixed connective tissue disease. I have absolutely no physicians or specialists as they constantly give me the run around. My cardiologist 6 years ago told me that the VSD was gone and he was not sure what was causing my pulmonary hypertension only to tell me last year that he found my VSD again and that he didn't know what to do except wait and see what happens each year. It is very frustrating. I find the expertise and quality of care greatly lacking. I am worried as I don't know if I should be in the care of cardiologists and/or specialists, but no one seems too concerned. On a side note my maternal grandmother died suddenly at the age of 40 from reasons unknown, but she did suffer from autoimmune illness like myself.

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