Pulmonary hypertension: diagnostics and therapeutics

Mayo Clin Proc. 2000 Jun;75(6):625-30. doi: 10.4065/75.6.625.


Pulmonary hypertension (PH) may develop because of a spectrum of insults to the lungs; in some patients, there seems to be no cause. Noninvasive tests, such as standard chest radiography, electrocardiography, and transthoracic Doppler echocardiography, provide effective screening if PH is suspected. This synopsis focuses on these screening studies and the more common clinical problems, including primary cardiac abnormalities, obstructive sleep apnea, chronic pulmonary embolism, pulmonary parenchymal problems, connective tissue disorders, cirrhosis with portal hypertension, and use of appetite suppressants, that should be considered when PH exists. Treatment options for PH, including intravenous prostacyclin (epoprostenol), and investigational agents such as subcutaneous or oral prostacyclin analogues and oral endothelin receptor antagonists are described.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Blood Pressure
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Echocardiography, Doppler
  • Electrocardiography
  • Humans
  • Hypertension, Pulmonary / diagnosis*
  • Hypertension, Pulmonary / diagnostic imaging
  • Hypertension, Pulmonary / etiology
  • Hypertension, Pulmonary / physiopathology
  • Hypertension, Pulmonary / surgery
  • Hypertension, Pulmonary / therapy*
  • Radiography
  • Systole
  • Ventricular Dysfunction, Right / diagnostic imaging