Understanding Primary Pulmonary Hypertension

An overview of primary pulmonary hypertension.

Primary pulmonary hypertension occurs when there is elevated blood pressure in the arteries due to constriction. This constriction causes problems with blood flow in the lungs and also makes the heart work harder.

The Difference Between Primary and Secondary

There are two kinds of pulmonary hypertension -- primary pulmonary hypertension and secondary pulmonary hypertension.

Primary pulmonary hypertension occurs when there is no other apparent cause for the pulmonary hypertension. Secondary pulmonary hypertension occurs when the pulmonary hypertension is a result of another underlying condition.

What the Pulmonary Artery Does

The pulmonary artery is the blood vessel that carries blood that is low in oxygen from the right ventricle of the heart to the lungs. Once in the lungs, the blood picks up more oxygen and then flows to the heart’s left ventricle where it is then pumped through the rest of the body via the aorta.

When primary pulmonary hypertension sets in, this process can be interrupted and primary pulmonary hypertension can lead to death.

The Signs and Symptoms

Symptoms of primary pulmonary hypertension include shortness of breath, fatigue, hyperventilation, progressive weakness, fainting spells, dizziness, coughing up blood, and/or a blue tinge to the lips, hands and feet.

How is Primary Pulmonary Hypertension Diagnosed?

Primary pulmonary hypertension is often diagnosed with an electrocardiogram, an echocardiogram or a chest x-ray. However, the best way to diagnose the condition is with a cardiac catheterization.

Preventing Primary Pulmonary Hypertension

Because we don’t know what causes primary pulmonary hypertension, we can’t work directly to prevent the condition. However, a healthy lifestyle consisting of a balanced diet, regular exercise and health supplements like the one available at this website can only aid us in our quest for health.

Treatment of Primary Pulmonary Hypertension

While there is no cure for primary pulmonary hypertension, there are many methods of treatment. These methods include giving oxygen to the patient, the use of calcium channel blockers, diuretics, and various prescription medications.

Prognosis of Primary Pulmonary Hypertension

Unless caught early, the prognosis of primary pulmonary hypertension is not good. However, with early diagnosis and a combination of surgery and medication, people with primary pulmonary hypertension can go on to lead normal, healthy lives.

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