Pulmonary Hypertension

Pulmonary hypertension (PH) is a disorder in which the arteries that carry blood from the right side of the heart to the lungs become narrowed, making it difficult for blood to flow through the vessels. As a result, the blood pressure in these arteries, rises far above normal levels. This abnormally high pressure strains the right ventricle of the heart, causing it to expand in size, thicken, and eventually weaken and fail.

What are the symptoms?

The most common symptoms of PH include shortness of breath with mild activity, fatigue, dizziness, fainting, swollen ankles, and chest pain. Symptoms are usually mild in early stages but as the disease progresses it can cause severe disability.

Who is at risk for PH?

There is a higher prevalence of PH in females, and some studies suggest that it may be hereditary. People at risk for PH are those who:

  • Took Redux or Phen-fen
  • Have a congenital heart defect
  • Have scleroderma or lupus
  • Are HIV-positive
  •  Have chronic liver disease
  • Have sleep apnea

How is PH diagnosed?

Diagnosis of PH is complicated, requiring multiple tests of lung function, heart function and repeated blood work. The earlier that PH is diagnosed, the better the symptoms may be managed.

 What are the treatment options?

There are many new exciting therapies currently available for treating PH. These are often used in combination with each other to provide the most effective treatment.

The Pulmonary Hypertension Clinic at TGH:

The Pulmonary Hypertension (PH) program is housed in the Advanced Lung Disease Clinic at Tampa General Hospital. The hospital provides both state-of-the-art invasive and non-invasive diagnostic services. Our program offers you access to experienced team of doctors, nurses, and staff.

Goals of Our Program:

  • Provide timely, complete and accurate diagnostic evaluation to all patients with suspected pulmonary hypertension
  • Offer patients a complete explanation of their disease process, options for treatment, and prognosis
  • Provide each patient with a comprehensive treatment program
  • Improve hemodynamics, longevity, and quality of life with treatment
  • Delay / Avoid Transplantation
  • Support each patient throughout evaluation, treatment, and follow-up
  • Maintain communication with referring physicians at all times

Clinical Research:

There is opportunity to participate in national clinical research trials with major pharmaceutical corporations. Presently, we are enrolling in several PH trials.

New Patient Referrals:

We accept physician referrals or self-referrals and second opinions. Further information about our program may be made by phone call or e-mail provided.