What is pulmonary hypertension? If you have received a diagnosis, you know it’s serious. It is different to have regular high blood pressure. Specifically, the diagnosis means you have high blood pressure in the arteries leading from the lungs to the heart. People often describe it as high blood pressure in the system heart to the lungs.
If you have high blood pressure, you probably know the drill: quit smoking, limit alcohol, reducing salt and sugar, eat more potassium, stress and commit to regular activity. Making these common, and are in good shape to keep your blood pressure in the healthy range.
But what about pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH)? What are the causes and risk factors, and what can be done to bring it under control?
What is pulmonary hypertension?
Pulmonary hypertension is a life-threatening illness – is not something to be taken lightly. That gets worse over time. There are treatments that can help relieve symptoms and allow you to re-do all the things he likes to do. So do not be discouraged (no pun intended) …
Pulmonary hypertension begins when the small arteries of the lungs, called pulmonary arteries are narrowed or blocked, even destroyed. So it is much more difficult for blood to flow through the lungs. In turn, this increases the pressure in the arteries of the lungs. Undoubtedly, your heart works harder to pump blood to all organs, tissues and cells of the body. That blood supplies oxygen and nutrients and removes hazardous wastes.
But now with pulmonary hypertension, the heart has to work harder to pump blood through these arteries. After a while, the heart muscle is weakened.
Think of your body as a factory, well oiled and running smoothly under management with the right foods, regular activity and good health habits. All goes well until strikes of pulmonary hypertension.
The pressure continues to increase and the working conditions are too harsh. His heart is ready to go on strike. Which means that, eventually, pulmonary hypertension can lead to heart failure.
There is no cure for pulmonary hypertension, as we have said, but the sooner is diagnosed, the easier it is to live. Your heart needs all the help it can get.
Types of pulmonary hypertension
The main cause of pulmonary hypertension is heart disease, but there are different types. When it comes to understanding the causes and risks of pulmonary hypertension, you have to be aware of what type of pulmonary hypertension have. Both share the same signs and symptoms of pulmonary hypertension. While heart specialists break these two further down, the basic types are:
- Primary pulmonary hypertension or idiopathic pulmonary hypertension (IPH): This rare type of the disease is not caused by any other illness or underlying condition, so there is no known cause. Some people with primary pulmonary hypertension can have a gene is a risk factor for the development of pulmonary hypertension. But in most people, there is no known cause.
- Secondary pulmonary hypertension :. Much more common, secondary pulmonary hypertension is caused by another underlying condition
causes and risks of pulmonary hypertension
High blood pressure, as we know, is very common. According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), one in three American adults has high blood pressure, but only half have their condition under control. Not well! If you have high blood pressure, put it under control and save his life
As the CDC points out, other common underlying causes are pulmonary hypertension of some types of congenital heart disease, connective tissue disease, coronary artery disease, liver disease (cirrhosis), blood clots to the lungs, and chronic lung diseases such as emphysema.
Other less common causes include the following:
- Sleep apnea and other sleep disorders
- Sickle cell anemia
- left heart failure
- who live at higher altitudes to 8,000 feet
- climbing or hiking at higher altitudes to 8,000 feet without acclimating first
- The use of certain stimulant drugs such as cocaine
Who is at risk for pulmonary hypertension? Anyone can develop any type of pulmonary hypertension. Older adults are more likely to have secondary pulmonary hypertension, and young people are more likely to have primary pulmonary hypertension, which also happens to be more common in women than in men. In general, pulmonary hypertension is more common among women, blacks and non-Hispanic persons aged 75 or more.
As with many conditions, another risk factor is a family history of the disease or genetic defects. Some genes may be associated with primary pulmonary hypertension. These genes can cause an overgrowth of cells in the small arteries of the lungs. This makes these arteries even narrower, which contributes to the higher pressure.
Symptoms of pulmonary hypertension
Symptoms of pulmonary hypertension during the first stage of the disease are common to many other medical conditions – symptoms such as fatigue and shortness of breath. Often this means a delay in diagnosis until more severe symptoms occur. More severe signs are dizziness, chest pain, swelling of the ankles and feel your heart race or palpitations pounds with fear.
Let’s explain in detail the signs and symptoms of lower lung uncontrolled hypertension, so you know what it is seeking. Note that from the beginning, you might think that is simply out of shape due to fatigue and general tiredness, are often the first symptoms:
- Shortness of breath during daily activities such as climbing stairs or walking from your car to the grocery store
- decreased appetite
- Chest pain
- racing heartbeat
- Pain in the upper right abdomen
As the disease gets worse, you probably know. You will find it difficult to do any physical activity. Other signs and symptoms may follow, including:
- fainting episodes
- Swelling in the legs and ankles
- bluish tint to lips and skin
- Dizziness, especially during physical exertion
These later symptoms indicate that your body enough blood carrying oxygen from the lungs is not circulating – which is a health problem that needs definitive treatment. If these symptoms are reoccurring, consult your doctor. Early diagnosis goes a long era in the treatment of pulmonary hypertension with a variety of forms: pills, inhaled medications, medications to reduce swelling in the feet (diuretics), a drug that is administered through the veins beneath the skin, and oxygen. Sometimes they carried out lung transplants.
Diagnosis and treatment for pulmonary hypertension
The diagnosis of pulmonary hypertension is performed through any of the blood tests, chest X-rays, Doppler echocardiography, transesophageal echocardiography, right heart catheterization tests of lung function, perfusion scintigraphy, computed tomography, magnetic resonance imaging or open lung biopsy. These tests can be performed in conjunction with others in order to obtain a proper diagnosis of pulmonary hypertension.
The treatment of pulmonary hypertension consists of drugs that aim to open blood vessels calcium, block, dilute the blood, urination and increase oxygen.
If you have been diagnosed with pulmonary hypertension, the American Heart Association (AHA) says to continue his medical treatment plan strictly. Do not alter the dose, please, without the approval of your doctor:
“If the instructions of your health care team do not follow can be extremely dangerous. Medical therapy has significantly improved the outlook for most patients, but does not cure pulmonary hypertension.”
A new study shows that physical training is a sure way to improve the quality of life of people suffering from pulmonary hypertension. Pulmonary hypertension affects approximately 10 to 15 million Americans each and has an annual mortality rate of 15 percent. The condition occurs as a result of blood pressure that affects the heart and lungs, often causing the patient dizzy or tired and can make it harder to breathe. It can even lead to heart failure if left untreated. Continue reading …
People can reduce the risk of left ventricular hypertrophy (LVH) – a complication of hypertension – to achieve a reduction in systolic blood pressure than currently recommended. The findings come from researchers at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center. Continue reading …