Pulmonary hypertension is a rare and serious disease in which the pressure in the pulmonary (lung) circulation is above normal levels. Left untreated, pulmonary hypertension can cause permanent damage to the lungs, resulting in life-threatening right heart failure and death.
The Pulmonary Hypertension Center is now accredited by the Pulmonary Hypertension Association as a designated Tier 1 Pulmonary Hypertension Comprehensive Care Center. Learn more here.
Pulmonary hypertension is currently classified into five main groups (1-5) with most treatments directed toward patients with group 1 pulmonary arterial hypertension. When there is no known cause, it is called idiopathic (primary) pulmonary arterial hypertension and pulmonary hypertension that occurs as a result of other disorders is called secondary pulmonary hypertension. One example of a common type of secondary pulmonary arterial hypertension, caused by abnormal development and defects in the heart and great vessels, is called Eisenmenger's syndrome.
At the Pulmonary Hypertension Comprehensive Care Center of NYP/Columbia, we treat all forms of pulmonary hypertension and associated right heart failure, including idiopathic pulmonary arterial hypertension and secondary forms of pulmonary hypertension associated with a variety of conditions:
- congenital heart disease including Eisenmenger’s syndrome
- Lupus, scleroderma and other connective tissue diseases
- chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension — CTEPH (including surgery for clot removal – pulmonary thromboendarterectomy)
- chronic lung disease and advanced lung failure including mechanical bridging with ECMO when indicated
- liver disease
- HIV disease
- genetic (familial/inherited) pulmonary hypertension
- HHT (hereditary hemorrhagic telangiectasia)
- pulmonary hypertension of the newborn
- sickle cell disease
- toxin (methamphetamines) exposure
While there have been many advances in the treatment of pulmonary arterial hypertension over the past two decades, there is still no cure aside from lung transplantation if medical therapy fails.