PAH Lung DiseasePAH Lung Disease Symptoms and Causes

Pulmonary arterial hypertension is a type of pulmonary hypertension which is an umbrella term for ailments related to high blood pressure in lungs. In this medical condition, there is obstruction in the small arteries of the lungs that causes high pressure in the vessels of the lungs. PAH can be a very debilitating disease that can eventually damage the heart of the patient. He usually experiences pain in his chest that is accompanied by feelings of dizziness and fatigue. What is unusual about this medical condition is that in many cases, patients exhibit no symptoms, making it difficult for the doctor to diagnose the underlying cause for the pain in the chest or the uneasiness of the patient.

What Is Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension?

Pulmonary arterial hypertension is a disease of the lungs. In layman’s terms, it is high blood pressure that affects the lungs and later damages the heart of the individual. In PAH lung diseases, the small arteries of the lungs become constricted, causing high pressure in the vessels of the lungs. In some cases, these small arteries get choked and in other cases they get destroyed. This makes it hard for blood to flow freely inside the lungs. Therefore, high pressure is created inside the arteries of the lings. As a result, the heart of the patient is forced to apply pressure to send the required quantities of blood into the lungs. It weakens the muscles of the heart and it fails in the long run.

Causes of Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension

In many cases, doctors are unable to find the reason why a patient suffers from PAH lung disease. They can see that there is high blood pressure inside the lungs but cannot fathom the reason behind this medical condition. There can be many different causes of his condition of the lungs. Some of these causes are listed below.

  • Drug abuse
  • Clotting of lungs
  • HIV
  • Congestive heart failure
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Autoimmune disease
  • Sleep apnea
  • Other lung diseases

Symptoms of Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension

PAH lung disease is an ailment where symptoms may not be visible to the patient for many months and even years. It is only when the disease has entered an advance stage that symptoms begin to show up. Some of the symptoms shown by the patients of PAH lung disease is as follows.

  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Shortness of breath
  • Pain in chest
  • Fainting spells
  • Bluish colour of lips and skin
  • Swelling in legs and finally in the abdomen
  • Fast heart rate

The patient initially experiences shortness of breath when he is active and thus blames it on physical activity. However, this shortness of breath worsens as the disease advances. Most patients go to the doctor when their symptoms worsen, and they find that their lungs go out of the wind for doing ordinary tasks.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does a person live with pulmonary hypertension?

If the underlying cause of PH lung disease is reversible and the treatment of the patient begins at an early stage, he can expect to live a normal life span. However, if the underlying cause is irreversible like chronic lung disease or congestive heart failure, the condition of the patient worsens with passage of time and he dies within 2-3 years.

Is pulmonary hypertension a terminal illness?

Pulmonary lung disease is a rare disease that eventually leads to death of the patient because of right heart failure. However, if the disease is diagnosed at an early stage and the underlying cause is irreversible, patient can live a long life.

What is the most common cause of pulmonary hypertension?

Most common causes of PAH lung disease is narrowing down of arteries of the lung. This constriction of small blood vessels of the lungs takes place because of many reasons such as lung diseases, liver diseases, congenital heart diseases, and drug abuse.

Can you live a normal life with pulmonary hypertension?

Living a normal life with PAH lung disease is difficult as symptoms worsen with passage of time. It takes correct diagnosis at an early stage to make sure that the underlying causes of this disease are reversed with medication.

Is walking good for pulmonary hypertension?

Walking and other types of exercises are considered good for patients of PAH lung disease as toned muscles can use oxygen more efficiently than flaccid muscles.

Hunterdon Pulmonary & Sleep Center is the leading center for the diagnosis and treatment of pulmonary hypertension in Flemington, NJ. Call at 906-237-1560 or email at to book an appointment for a proper check up and diagnosis from a trained and qualified pulmonary specialist. We have the top pulmonary doctors in the whole of NJ and we can help you in getting relief from your symptoms of PAH lung disease.