Clinical characteristics, haemodynamics and treatment of pulmonary hypertension in sarcoidosis in a single centre, and meta-analysis of the published data

Am J Cardiol. 2013 Jan 15;111(2):278-85. doi: 10.1016/j.amjcard.2012.09.031.


Pulmonary hypertension (PH) in sarcoidosis is associated with bad outcomes. Although there is interest in using pulmonary vasodilators (PVs) for PH in sarcoidosis, there are few data to support their use. In this study, a retrospective review of a cohort of patients with PH and sarcoidosis was conducted, focusing on those treated with PVs, and a meta-analysis of published reports indexed in MEDLINE was performed. Twenty-four patients were found. The rate of mortality or transplantation rate was 41.2%. Median survival without transplantation was 5.3 years. More patients who died or underwent transplantation during follow-up had moderate or severe lung fibrosis (66.7% vs 15.4%), had right ventricular dysfunction (80% vs 7.7%), and were in World Health Organization class IV (66.7% vs 30.8%). Body surface areas were lower in patients with events, as was cardiac output. Mortality was not different between patients treated with PVs and those not treated (54.5% vs 38.5%, p = 0.44) despite the treated patients' having more right ventricular dysfunction and worse hemodynamics. In a Cox regression survival model, lower body surface area, right ventricular dysfunction, and the presence of moderate or severe lung fibrosis were predictors of worse outcomes, but not treatment with PVs. PV-treated patients (n = 11) showed improved 6-minute walk distances and decreased N-terminal pro-B-type natriuretic peptide levels during follow-up. There was a trend toward improvement in hemodynamic profile. Four studies plus the data from this study were included in the meta-analysis. Six-minute walk distance improved by 30.64 m after treatment. Hemodynamics improved, with a reduction in mean pulmonary arterial pressure of 8.03 mm Hg and a decrease in pulmonary vascular resistance of 4.23 Wood units. In conclusion, PH in sarcoidosis is associated with adverse outcomes, particularly when accompanied by right ventricular dysfunction and/or moderate or severe lung fibrosis. Treating selected patients can improve hemodynamics and functional parameters.

Publication types

  • Meta-Analysis
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antihypertensive Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Global Health
  • Hemodynamics / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Hypertension, Pulmonary* / drug therapy
  • Hypertension, Pulmonary* / etiology
  • Hypertension, Pulmonary* / physiopathology
  • Proportional Hazards Models
  • Sarcoidosis, Pulmonary / complications*
  • Sarcoidosis, Pulmonary / mortality
  • Survival Rate / trends
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Antihypertensive Agents