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What is Chronic Pulmonary Heart Disease?

Chronic pulmonary heart disease is a condition where the structure and function of the heart is altered due to a lung disorder or damage to the arteries supplying the lungs.

picture of Chronic Pulmonary Heart Disease

Causes of Chronic Pulmonary Heart Disease

Blood pressure in the right side of the heart can be increased if there is any damage or change in structure to the blood vessels in the lungs. Due to this, the heart has to work harder to pump the blood to the lungs, increasing the strain on the right ventricle.

Respiratory conditions that can cause chronic pulmonary heart disease include:

  • Cystic fibrosis
  • Sleep apnea (Breathing difficulties during sleep)
  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
  • Autoimmune disorders that damage lung tissue

Signs and Symptoms of Chronic Pulmonary Heart Disease

The signs and symptoms may not be noticeable during the early stages, but as the disease advances, the symptoms may become more apparent. These include:

  • Dyspnea (breathing difficulty)
  • Weakness
  • Chest pain
  • Fainting
  • Abnormal heartbeat
  • Discoloration of lips and fingers
  • Feet or leg swelling

Diagnosis of Chronic Pulmonary Heart Disease

Physical examination and medical testing are carried out for the diagnosis of chronic pulmonary heart disease.

During the physical examination, your doctor will look for:

  • Abnormal heart rhythm
  • Prominent neck veins
  • Swelling in the legs
  • Fluid accumulation in the belly
  • Color change of skin
  • Liver inflammation

Diagnostic tests include:

  • CT scan that takes images of your chest to assess heart size
  • Blood tests to detect the presence of antibodies
  • Tests to identify the presence of an autoimmune disorder
  • Echocardiogram to check the function of the heart
  • Lung scan to detect blood clots
  • Lung biopsy may be performed in rare cases

Treatment for Chronic Pulmonary Heart Disease

The aim of treatment is to eliminate the cause of chronic pulmonary heart disease by the following treatments:

  • Blood thinners to dissolve blood clots
  • Diuretics to remove the accumulated fluid and maintain normal sodium levels
  • Medications to reduce blood pressure
  • Increasing oxygen flow to the lungs via oxygen therapy
  • Heart or lung transplantation (in rare cases)

Prevention of Chronic Pulmonary Heart Disease

Chronic pulmonary heart disease may be prevented by:

  • Regular exercise
  • Maintaining a healthy weight
  • Following a healthy and balanced diet
  • Avoiding smoking
  • Regular health check-ups
  • Reducing hypertension

Contact with Dr. Adey Agbetoyin

cardiovascular clinic of West Tennessee

2968 North Highland Ave,
TN 38305

  • Monday to Friday 8:00 am - 5:00 pm