What is PAH?
PAH is a type of high blood pressure in the arteries (blood vessels) of your lungs. An artery is a blood vessel that carries blood away from the heart. The pulmonary arteries carry blood from the heart to the lungs.
This high blood pressure is caused when the openings in the blood vessels of the lungs get smaller and smaller. These smaller openings can be caused by the following:
- The walls of the arteries tightening
- The walls of the arteries becoming stiff and narrow from an overgrowth of cells
Normal vs PAH blood vessels:
How is PAH diagnosed?
Some of the tests used to diagnose PAH are echocardiography (images produced by sound waves bounced off the heart and lungs) and right heart catheterization (a tube inserted in the pulmonary artery that measures blood pressure).
Can PAH be treated?
The increased pressure in the pulmonary arteries strains the right side of the heart and it begins to fail. There is no cure for PAH, but several medications are available to help slow the progression of changes in the pulmonary arteries and help reduce symptoms. However, even with medication, about half of patients are still in WHO Functional Class III.
To treat your PAH (WHO Group 1), your doctor may give you Adempas. Adempas is a prescription medicine used to treat adults with PAH (WHO Group 1). The Adempas clinical studies included mostly patients with WHO Functional Class II–III symptoms.
Don’t have PAH?
Learn about chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension (CTEPH) (WHO Group 4) that is either inoperable or recurrent/persistent after surgery.