Pulmonary arterial blood pressure is the force the right side of the heart needs to overcome to push blood to the lungs. Pulmonary hypertension (PH) is a higher pressure than normal. It will make it harder for the right side of the heart to pump blood.
If PH is left untreated it can lead to heart failure. The right side of the heart will no longer be able to pump enough blood. There are 5 different groups of PH.
Factors that may increase your chance of pulmonary hypertension include:
Having one of conditions listed above
Family history of PH
Home at high altitude (over 10,000 feet)
Use of street drugs such as cocaine
There may be no symptoms in early PH. It may take years until any appear. Common symptoms include:
Shortness of breath that continues to get worse over time
Ankle swelling from fluid retention
Your doctor will ask about your symptoms and past health. You may also be asked about your family’s health history. A physical exam will be done. The doctor may suspect PH based on your symptoms and exam.
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