Diastolic Heart Failure vs. PAH

The most common disease confused with pulmonary arterial hypertension is diastolic heart failure (also called heart failure with preserved ejection fraction-HeFPEF).  In my practice about 70% of patients referred to me for PAH actually have diastolic heart failure. Let’s review basic heart function.  The heart has two main actions—squeezing and relaxing.  The squeezing phase … [Read more...]

End of Year Insurance Considerations for PAH Patients

The end of the year brings many celebrated happenings. It is a wonderful time of year to celebrate coming together with family and friends.  It also brings a much less celebrated event…open enrollment. Open Enrollment We are currently in the middle of Medicare/Medicaid open enrollment which began October 15th and will end December 7th. Coverage chosen during this time will … [Read more...]

Flu Season is Here for PAH Patients

November is here and so is the respiratory virus season.  For patients with PAH and IPF this means that we have to worry about avoiding friends with respiratory symptoms (cough, runny nose, sneezing).  Protecting yourself also means getting a flu shot.  This is not a low priority item on your to do list.  Make it a top priority. Each year 36,000 Americans die from influenza … [Read more...]

Second Opinions in Pulmonary Hypertension Care

We receive many questions about how and when to obtain a second opinion about pulmonary hypertension.  First, as a patient you should never feel insecure or like you are not being loyal or a good patient by seeking a second opinion. This is your health at stake.  Second, your doctor should not make you feel badly for seeking a second opinion. Be Your Own Advocate If you were … [Read more...]

Sickle Cell and Pulmonary Hypertension

What is Sickle Cell Disease? Sickle Cell Disease is a genetic disorder of the red blood cells. It is autosomal recessive (you need to get one defective gene copy from each of your parents). Patients with sickle cell disease have abnormal hemoglobin in their red cells. Under periods of stress the red cells become deformed and plug up the blood vessels of the lungs and other … [Read more...]