What is Pulmonary Hypertension?
Pulmonary hypertension is high blood pressure in the arteries that supply blood to the lungs. The condition can cause the arteries to stiffen and thicken, which reduces blood flow through the vessels and makes the heart work harder to pump blood. This can weaken the heart muscle and lead to heart rhythm disorders (arrhythmias) and heart failure.
Diagnosing Pulmonary Hypertension
When symptoms are noticeable, they are similar to other lung and heart conditions which can make pulmonary hypertension difficult to diagnose.
Diagnosis usually requires more than one test, such as medical imaging to view the heart and lungs, advanced cardiac diagnostic tests like electrocardiography (ECG or EKG), or cardiac catheterization. You may also need to have a pulmonary function test to evaluate your lungs or a ventilation/perfusion scan to measure breathing and circulation throughout your lungs.
Treating Pulmonary Hypertension
At Hackensack Meridian Health, we offer a full spectrum of pulmonary hypertension treatments, including:
- Medicines: Oral, inhaled and intravenous medications to relax or widen blood vessels to improve blood flow or reduce fluid in the body
- Oxygen therapy: Delivers oxygen to the lungs using a mask and oxygen tank
- Pulmonary and cardiac rehabilitation: Education, support and guided exercise to improve the efficiency of the heart and lungs
- Surgery: Creates an opening between the heart’s upper chambers to relieve pressure on the heart (atrial septostomy), which can lower blood pressure the lungs
Treatment varies based on the cause identified and often requires many different therapies.
Why Choose Hackensack Meridian Health for Your Care
Hackensack University Medical Center is nationally recognized among the top hospitals in the nation for Cardiology, Heart & Vascular Surgery by U.S. News & World Report in 2023, and is the best Cardiology, Heart & Vascular Surgery program in New Jersey. Additionally, U.S. News & World Report named seven Hackensack Meridian Health hospitals as High Performing for Heart Failure.
Our program uses a multidisciplinary approach with cardiologists, advanced practice nurses, physical therapy, social workers, registered dietitians, Magnet recognized nurses and many more to provide a comprehensive care plan focusing on the patient as the center.
The combination of expert surgeons, advanced technology and array of heart care services makes Hackensack Meridian Health a trusted choice for patients and families in New Jersey.