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Pulmonary Hypertension Program

When you have high blood pressure in your lungs, it’s called pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH). Because symptoms can include fatigue and shortness of breath, this chronic, life-altering disease can make even simple tasks like climbing stairs difficult. While doctors and researchers continue to work on a cure, several treatment options are available that greatly improve the quality of our patients’ lives and delay the progression of the disease which can become life threatening. With the right care and coping strategies, many of our patients are able to lead full lives after diagnosis.

The Leading Pulmonary Hypertension Treatment Center in the Region

While the incidence of PAH is rare (for every million people in the United States, there are only one to two cases), every year hundreds of PAH patients and their families come to the John Ochsner Heart and Vascular Institute (JOHVI). Here, at the largest pulmonary hypertension treatment center in the Gulf South, they find the answers they seek as well as the relief they need to live with this challenging disease.

Meet Your Team

The Ochsner PAH team includes intensely dedicated cardiologists, pulmonologists, advanced practice providers, and outpatient nurses passionate about caring for patients with pulmonary hypertension. In addition, a large number of highly skilled inpatient nurses in the Transplant Step-Down Unit and Cardiac-Medical ICU have a wealth of experience treating this disease. As part of Ochsner Health System, we have also developed strong relationships with world-renowned experts in other subspecialties, including cardiac anesthesia, palliative care, rheumatology, nephrology and pediatric cardiology, to name but a few. Our social worker team works closely with home health care agencies and Ochsner Total Health Solutions to get our patients the care and medical equipment they need to improve their lives. We also partner with several specialty pharmacies to provide 24-hour support for patients who need it.

Symptoms of PAH

  • Shortness of breath  
  • Chest pain or pressure
  • Dizziness upon standing, climbing stairs, straightening up from a bent position, or even while just sitting
  • Fainting or near fainting
  • Loss of energy/fatigue
  • Swollen ankles, legs and abdomen
  • Cough
  • Palpitations or racing heart beats