Chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension

Marius M Hoeper, Michael M Madani, Norifumi Nakanishi, Bernhard Meyer, Serghei Cebotari, Lewis J Rubin
Lancet Respiratory Medicine 2014, 2 (7): 573-82
Chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension (CTEPH) is a rare but debilitating and life-threatening complication of acute pulmonary embolism. CTEPH results from persistent obstruction of pulmonary arteries and progressive vascular remodelling. Not all patients presenting with CTEPH have a history of clinically overt pulmonary embolism. The diagnostic work-up to detect or rule out CTEPH should include ventilation-perfusion scintigraphy, which has high sensitivity and a negative predictive value of nearly 100%. CT angiography usually reveals typical features of CTEPH, including mosaic perfusion, part or complete occlusion of pulmonary arteries, and intraluminal bands and webs. Patients with suspected CTEPH should be referred to a specialist centre for right-heart catheterisation and pulmonary angiography. Surgical pulmonary endarterectomy remains the treatment of choice for CTEPH and is associated with excellent long-term results and a high probability of cure. For patients with inoperable CTEPH, various medical and interventional therapies are being developed.

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