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The limits of oral therapy in pulmonary arterial hypertension management

Authors Liu Q, Jing Z

Received 22 August 2014

Accepted for publication 16 September 2015

Published 23 November 2015 Volume 2015:11 Pages 1731—1741

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/TCRM.S49026

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 5

Editor who approved publication: Professor Garry Walsh

Qian-Qian Liu,1,2 Zhi-Cheng Jing1,3

1Department of Cardio-Pulmonary Circulation, Shanghai Pulmonary Hospital, Tongji University School of Medicine, Shanghai, People’s Republic of China; 2Department of Echocardiography, Fu Wai Hospital, National Center for Cardiovascular Diseases, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences and Peking Union Medical College, Beijing, People’s Republic of China; 3State Key Laboratory of Cardiovascular Disease, Fu Wai Hospital, National Center for Cardiovascular Diseases, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences and Peking Union Medical College, Beijing, People’s Republic of China


Abstract: Pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) is a devastating disease in which remodeling of the small pulmonary arteries leads to a progressive increase in pulmonary vascular resistance and right-sided heart failure. Over the past decade, new treatments for PAH, such as the use of ERAs, PDE-5 inhibitors and prostacyclin analogs, have brought about dramatic improvements in clinical outcomes. Epoprostenol infusion therapy has been shown to improve hemodynamics, functional status, and survival, and it remains the gold standard for treatment of patients with severe PAH. Many agents, approved for PAH are always delivered in pill form. Although oral therapy occupies an important position, it has some drawbacks and limitations in PAH management. For patients in World Health Organization functional class IV and with severe right heart failure, there are few data on the long-term survival of patients treated with oral medications. Further research, exploration, and clinical experience with oral therapy in severe PAH and combination therapy will redefine its position in PAH management.

Keywords: pulmonary arterial hypertension, right heart failure, oral therapy, survival

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