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New insights into the treatment of pulmonary arterial hypertension (PDF)


Pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) is a progressive, debilitating disorder associated with poor quality of life and shortened life span. For many years, medical therapy consisted of calcium channel blockers, warfarin, supplemental oxygen, and digitalis glycosides. A better understanding of the pathophysiology of PAH has led to the recent development of effective treatments for this disorder. Therapeutic agents target the pathophysiologic mechanisms of PAH: pulmonary vasoconstriction, pulmonary vascular remodeling, and in situ thrombosis. With better understanding of the pathogenesis of PAH, recent advances in pharmacotherapy have been introduced for the treatment of PAH. Data are presented on efficacy and safety of newer approved and investigational agents: prostacyclin analogues, oral endothelin antagonists, and phosphodiesterase 5 inhibitors.

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