PAH Treatment: 6 Solutions For Pulmonary Hypertension
In this article, we’ll discuss some of the best PAH treatment options.
What Is Pulmonary Hypertension?
Pulmonary Hypertension, also known as Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension or PAH is a type of high blood pressure problem that directly impacts the arteries present in the lungs and the heart. When blood vessels are narrowed down, they go through contraction and it becomes hard for blood to flow at the desired rate, this leads to high blood pressure.
These pulmonary arteries are tasked with a constant goal to carry blood to and fro from the heart.
When an overgrowth of some tissues occur in the arteries, the usual route of blood flow becomes clogged, making it harder for blood to travel and eventually building up excessive pressure. This overgrowth of tissues can occur due to hundreds of reasons such as HIV infections, liver, and valvular heart diseases, chronic lung diseases, over-consumption of alcohol, excessive smoking and the consumption of certain drugs that do not suit the body.
Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension demands the heart to work at a much faster pace because the blood needs to be pumped and the blood pressure amongst the lung arteries and the heart is ridiculously high.
Due to this extreme internal activity, the heart muscles can easily get damaged and become weak, leading to sudden heart attacks and complete heart failure.
Treating Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension is a must as the problem only gets worse in the longer run.
Keep reading to understand different PAH treatment options.
1. Oral Treatment Medicines
The medication under this category includes Ambrisentan, Tadalafil, Sildenafil, Cardura, Riociguat, Bosentan, etc. These medicines are known to reduce blood pressure by a substantial amount due to their relaxing effect on blood vessels.
There is a natural chemical in the human body, known as Endothelin. Endothelin activity leads to the narrowing of blood vessels while also bringing about an abnormal growth of muscles in the walls of blood vessels. These blood vessels are usually in the lungs, and the arteries get clogged due to this extra formation of muscle and tissue.
It is because of this functionality of Endothelin that excess pressure is needed to pump blood to the lungs to acquire sufficient oxygen. Ambrisentan blocks this Endothelin activity and stabilizes blood pressure.
Riociguat also functions in the same manner but can be also be used to heal blood clots in the lungs that can lead to potential Chronic Thromboembolic Pulmonary Hypertension that usually arise due to unsuccessful surgeries.
Bosentan, on the other hand, has similar functionality to Riociguat and Ambrisentan. It helps the heart pump more blood in an efficient manner.
2. Inhaled Treatment Medicines
The medication under this category includes Aspirin, Epoprostenol, Prostaglandin, Iloprost, Treprostinil, etc. Both Epoprostenol and Prostaglandin have the same exact mechanism, they only differ in their overall medicinal strength.
They provide a direct impact on the heart and lungs in terms of vasodilation of pulmonary arteries and also systemic arterial vascular beds. As we know blood clots are formed when multiple blood platelets come together in one spot.
This clogging does lead to inevitably high chances of lower “flowing area” for the blood. These medicines work by inhibiting platelet aggregation so as to eradicate the occurrence and formation of hassle-causing blood clots.
Aspirin too can be inhaled for reducing the harmful effects of pulmonary arterial hypertension. Not only does it restrict the activity of thromboxane present in blood platelets, but it also inhibits the functionality of an enzyme known as Cyclooxygenase (COX).
When COX activity increases there is an automatic reaction that takes place in the body and prostaglandin is formed.
These prostaglandins result in throbbing internal pain followed by swelling and pain. Worst of all it leads to inflammation which is the root cause for blocked arteries.
3. Intravenous Treatment Medicines
The medication under this category includes Flolan, intravenous Treprostinil, and intravenous Epoprostenol. Flolan is basically Epoprostenol Sodium. For consuming this form of medication, an intravenous needle is pierced into the skin of the patient, precisely where the presence of a vein can be detected by an expert. Via the hole in the vein, an injection is given which contains the required medicines.
4. Abstain From Consuming Fatty Foods
If you are a victim of PAH, it is time to let go of fatty edibles and start including green vegetables in your diet. The fatty foods contain unhealthy saturated fats such as hydrogenated vegetable fat and trans fats. These fats get stuck in the body and make it harder for normal functions to occur.
For example, these fats are stuck in the middle of arteries and take their own sweet time to clear. In the process, fragile blood vessels are forced into situations where there is a high amount of blood pressure.
On the contrary, eating food that is healthy, such as, nuts, beans, omega 3, and skinless poultry will equip the body with desired nutrients and safeguard an individual from all PAH-related activities; making it one of the best and natural PAH treatment.
5. Quit Nicotine
Smoking tobacco leads to exposing your internal organs to nicotine and other cancer-causing ingredients. When these components are fused within the bloodstream, they collate and form lumps within the arteries which build up to high blood pressure; hence, quitting nicotine can be beneficial in this situation.
This can also lead to blood vessels bursting and causing abnormalities within arteries. Once you get rid of nicotine, the carbon monoxide levels in the body drastically drop and the toxins from the bloodstream get flushed out, leading to the stabilization of blood pressure.
6. Calcium Channel Blockers
Plendil, Procardia, Norvasc, and Cardene are the most commonly used Calcium Channel Blockers. Mixing this form of medication with alcohol can lead to major side effects. Thus, ensure there is at least a 12-hour gap between a drink of alcohol and a dose of a calcium channel blocker.
This form of medication once consumed functions by reducing the amount of Calcium entering the soft muscle walls of blood vessels, most importantly the blood vessels linked to the heart.
Due to this reduced activity of calcium, blood flow becomes optimum in the heart and the blood vessels begin to widen, eventually leading to a drop in symptoms and negative effects of Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension.
PAH Treatment: Wrap Up
Back in the day, patients who were victims of Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension did not have sufficient treatment options due to which they had a lower life expectancy.
As we have become progressive, medical scientists and researchers have come up with innovative solutions to formulate medicines that directly open up arteries and stabilize blood flow. Remember that PAH can never be completely cured, that best that can be done is control its effects and prevent damage to the arteries via the consumption of prescribed medicines.
April 1, 2020 Sam Bell