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Pulmonary Vascular Disease

The pulmonary vascular disease program provides expert care for patients with this type of advanced lung disease. Diagnostic and management services are available for any of the following hypertension conditions:

  • Idiopathic pulmonary arterial hypertension.
  • Pulmonary hypertension secondary to diet medications.
  • Pulmonary hypertension secondary to pulmonary embolism.
  • Pulmonary hypertension secondary to systemic disorders, such as scleroderma, rheumatoid arthritis, HIV disease, cirrhosis, obstructive sleep apnea syndrome, and sarcoidosis.
  • Pulmonary hypertension secondary to cardiac disorders.

What Is Pulmonary Hypertension?

Pulmonary hypertension (PH) is a rare and life-threatening lung disorder that strikes women and men of all ages. PH literally means high blood pressure in the lungs. It starts when blood vessels become stiff and less flexible, making it more difficult to pump vital blood and oxygen to the lungs.

Because PH is a complex disorder, its diagnosis requires multidisciplinary attention.

UConn Health offers a comprehensive approach to diagnose and treat PH. A team of UConn experts, including specialists in pulmonary medicine, cardiology and interventional cardiology, as well as a specialized nursing staff provide high quality, compassionate care.

What Causes Pulmonary Hypertension?

While there are many theories about the cause of pulmonary hypertension (PH), the medical community has not determined the specific cause of idiopathic pulmonary arterial hypertension.

However, PH can be secondary to several other serious conditions, such as:

  • Heart disease
  • Lung disease
  • Obstructive sleep apnea
  • Other diseases that affect blood vessels, such as rheumatoid arthritis or scleroderma
  • Complications from diet medications
  • Cirrhosis
  • HIV disease

Symptoms of Pulmonary Hypertension

The symptoms of pulmonary hypertension can be dramatic - and can also be mistaken for symptoms of other conditions:

  • Breathless feeling
  • Dizziness
  • Fainting
  • Chest pain or palpitations
  • Extreme fatigue


Because of the complex nature of pulmonary hypertension, treatment options vary. Specialists at UConn Health can help patients regain their strength and stamina and significantly improve their quality of life. A comprehensive program, led by a team of experts, to diagnose and treat pulmonary hypertension.