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Pulmonary Hypertension (cont.)

Pulmonary Hypertension Causes

Traditionally, pulmonary hypertension is divided into two classes; 1) primary, and 2) secondary.

Primary pulmonary hypertension is not caused by any other underlying condition.

Secondary pulmonary hypertension is caused by other underlying conditions, such as:

  • recurring blood clots in the lungs,

  • left-sided congestive heart failure,

  • long-standing (chronic) lung diseases,

  • illicit drug use,

  • certain medications,

  • some rheumatologic conditions, or

  • inflammation of the pulmonary blood vessels.

More specifically, pulmonary hypertension may be caused by:

Other less common causes of secondary hypertension include:

Secondary pulmonary hypertension is much more common than primary pulmonary hypertension.

There is also a newer classification of this condition, which is more complex. In this system, pulmonary hypertension may be divided into five basic groups based on whether the underlying cause is:

  1. lung disease,

  2. heart disease,

  3. vascular (blood vessel) disease,

  4. blood clots, or

  5. compression on the blood vessels from outside the vessel.

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