Finding it Hard to Breathe? You Could Have Pulmonary Hypertension – PPH, PAH or IPAH

What is Pulmonary Hypertension?Pulmonary hypertension is a rare, serious and incurable lung disorder that affects how blood flows from the lungs to the heart. It is categorized in two ways: primary, meaning there is no obvious cause; and secondary, in which a cause is known, such as bronchitis or emphysema. Primary pulmonary hypertension (PPH), also referred to as pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) and more recently, idiopathic pulmonary arterial hypertension (IPAH), causes increased blood pressure in the pulmonary artery, a blood vessel that carries oxygen-poor blood from the right ventricle of the heart to the lungs.Increased blood pressure can have serious results. The muscles within the walls of the arteries may tighten, causing the arteries to constrict. The walls of the pulmonary arteries may thicken. Scar tissue may form, causing the arteries to become increasingly narrow. Tiny blood clots may form within the smaller arteries, causing blockages. In more serious cases, when the right ventricle no longer functions properly, progressive heart failure occurs, leading most often to death.Symptoms:Symptoms of PPH frequently occur over a period of time, making the condition difficult to diagnose. Although most of the symptoms relate to breathing issues, such as shortness of breath and hyperventilation, other symptoms may include:
Extreme fatigue

Dizziness or fainting

Weakness of the body

Racing pulse

Chest pain

Swelling of legs and hands

Coughing up blood

Bluish discoloration of lips and skin (cyanosis)
Diagnosing PPH:PPH is regularly misdiagnosed in routine medical examinations since its symptoms can be confused with other more common conditions. These conditions must be ruled out first, along with secondary pulmonary hypertension disorders. Unfortunately this means that PPH is usually diagnosed after the appearance of many of the symptoms, and by that time the disorder is likely to have progressed to a more serious stage.Tests to diagnose PPH include:
X-ray of the chest



Cardiac catheterization

Blood tests


Pulmonary function tests

Connective tissue serology

Perfusion lung scans
In most cases, the cause of primary pulmonary hypertension is unknown, yet could be attributed to genetic or familial predisposition, immune system disease or drug/chemical exposure. A number of drugs, such as cocaine, amphetamines and the diet drug Fen Phen (taken off the market in September 1997) have been linked to causing PPH.Treatment:PPH requires proper medical diagnosis, treatment and follow-up. Most treatment regimes require drugs that help lower blood pressure, or affect the blood, blood vessels, lungs and/or heart. In recent studies, Viagra (Sildenafil) has been found to improve the condition of PPH. It is awaiting approval for use as a treatment for PPH.Other drug therapies may include:

Calcium channel blockers


Endothelin receptor antagonists

Prostacyclin analogues
Since every patient responds differently to drug combinations, amounts and types of drugs must be carefully monitored and often changed. For patients who do not respond to drug therapy, the other alternatives are heart-lung or lung transplantation. However, transplantation can lead to complications that could result in death.Statistics:The Montefiore Medical Center states that the first recorded case of primary pulmonary hypertension occurred in 1891. Each year in the United States, an estimated 500 to 1,000 new cases are diagnosed, most of them women between the ages of 20 and 40. However, both genders and any age can develop PPH. According to the American Lung Association, there were 3,065 deaths attributed to PPH in 2000. It can also be a genetic disorder

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High Blood Pressure (Hypertension)? Try Beet Juice

Researchers have been looking at the benefits of table beet juice for some years now with interesting results; sugar beets are different and almost all in North America are gene modified. This intensely colored antioxidant rich juice has been shown to improve stamina in athletes and to improve blood flow to the brain in the elderly among other properties.More recently researchers have turned their attention to hypertension. In a study published in the American Heart Association’s Hypertension Journal, British researchers at Queen Mary University in London administered 250 ml of beet juice daily to volunteers. The results showed the same benefit as taking prescription nitrate tablets. The very good news was that the group starting with the worst hypertension at study start, showed the greatest decreases.Research is indicating that when the Sympathetic (stimulatory) nervous system is chronically over active, it plays a significant role in the development of hypertension, just as chronic insulin spikes are an enormous risk factor for diabetes.This may explain what I’ve observed while working with those taking Equilib over the past decade. Clients with hypertension which varied in severity according to their level of perceived stress and/or anxiety often reported significant improvements in hypertension as their perceived stress/anxiety levels were reduced. Those with Essential Hypertension (i.e. of unknown cause) seemed rarely to report the same blood pressure reductions.My belief is that these clients’ reported manifestations of stress/anxiety and hypertension, were at least in part triggered by nutrient shortfalls which negatively affected the normal balancing acted done by the Sympathetic (excitatory) and Parasympathetic (inhibitory) nervous systems. Therefore the Equilib Nutrients hadn’t cured or treated these symptoms, but rather restored needed nutrient levels to allow for normal self regulation.In any case, trying 250 ml/day of beet juice seems a no brainer. Vegetables have a broad array of health benefits aside from effects on hypertension and for those who don’t want to bother with juicing beets, dried beet juice is available. I would personally ensure the dried beet juice was either organic, or confirm it was not made from sugar beets. In the study, the effects started within an hour, increased over the following few hours and lasted at least 24 hours, so if it’s going to help, you’ll know quite quickly.If on hypertension medications, I would certainly discuss this with your physician before starting, so that medications may be adjusted as needed depending on your response.Take care of your heart.All material and information presented is intended to be used for educational purposes only. The statements made about products have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The information s not intended to treat, cure or prevent any condition or disease. Please consult with your own physician or health care practitioner regarding the suggestions and recommendations made in the article.

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