Start Awareness Month With Day of Action
Email your story to Congress on this Pulmonary Hypertension Association Day of Action. Visit our Advocacy Action Center. With just a few clicks, you can educate your Congressional representatives about the health and lifestyle impacts of pulmonary hypertension. Explain how they can pass legislation to improve quality of life for the entire PH community.
Another way to take action is to send out a press release about PH Awareness Month to your local newspaper and radio or TV station. Download our customizable press release.
Add Awareness to Your Virtual Meetings
|Raise pulmonary hypertension awareness when you talk on Zoom or Skype to family, friends and colleagues. If you’re in a PH Support Group, use a virtual background to show your connection with PH and PHA. Whether you’re using virtual meeting software for work, book club or happy hours, use a PH Awareness Month background image to trigger questions and share information about PH. Start the conversation with your choice of backgrounds.
Download a PH Awareness Month Zoom or Skype background image for your next virtual meeting or gathering. (Remember: if you mirror your screen, the image will appear backward to you but normal to everyone else.)
|Download zoom background
Download zoom background
Download zoom background
Spark Awareness From Home
Spark Awareness Wherever You Are
What Causes PH? Most Commonly, Left Heart Disease.
There are five pulmonary hypertension groups based on different causes. Many underlying diseases and conditions can cause PH, which can be hereditary or occur without any known reason. Congestive heart failure is the most common cause of PH in the U.S., known as Group 2 PH. Watch our PHA Live webinar on Nov. 16 to learn more. Share this graphic to help raise awareness of Group 2 PH. To see other resources on left heart disease, visit PHAssociation.org/AwarenessMonth for other resources.
What Is the Most Common Symptom of PH?
Breathlessness is the most commonly reported symptom of pulmonary hypertension. People with PH become short of breath because high blood pressure in the lungs interferes with blood pumped from the right side of the heart, which pushes blood to the lungs to gather oxygen. Brief physical activity or climbing stairs often causes extreme shortness of breath, which can be mistaken for asthma or being out of shape. If left untreated, the extra burden on the right heart can weaken the heart, worsening prognosis. Share this graphic to raise awareness of this common, serious symptom of PH. Learn more about PH symptoms on our website.
PH Affects People Around the World
Pulmonary hypertension exists around the globe, which is one reason the Pulmonary Hypertension Association has had an international focus throughout its 30-year history.
Some PH risk factors are specific to certain regions. For example, those living at high altitudes for a long period of time have a higher risk of developing Group 3 PH, which is caused when small arteries in the lungs tighten and impede the flow of oxygen, forcing blood to detour to other areas of the lungs. One of the most common causes of PH in the developing world comes from contaminated water. Mostly in Africa and Asia, individuals may develop a severe form of Group 1 PH from schistosomiasis, a parasitic disease from freshwater worms whose eggs can obstruct the pulmonary arteries. In the U.S., the most common form of PH is from left heart disease.
Save the Date for the PHA 2022 International PH Conference and Scientific Sessions June 10-12 in Atlanta. The theme for next year’s Conference is “PHacing the Future Together.” Registration opens in January 2022.
Left Heart Disease Often Includes PH
The signs and symptoms of pulmonary hypertension due to left heart disease may sound already familiar to those with heart disease. They include shortness of breath, difficulty breathing while lying down, swelling in the legs or stomach, abdominal pain or distention, and/or decreased ability to exercise. Risk factors for PH due to left heart disease include age, coronary artery disease, heart failure, blockage (stenosis) or leakiness (regurgitation) of left aortic and mitral valves, atrial fibrillation and obesity (body mass index over 30). If you or someone you know might be at risk, learn more in our Nov. 16 PHA Live webinar about left heart disease. Register today.
Print Our Pocket Card at Home
We’ve gone digital with one of our most popular PH Awareness Month products. Download a PHA pocket card with facts about pulmonary hypertension and the Pulmonary Hypertension Association to print at home. Print cards for family and friends to raise awareness. The cards can help introduce PH to people who haven’t heard of the disease and don’t “see” a disability. For best results, use card stock when printing.
Today is CTEPH Awareness Day
Breathlessness and fatigue are common symptoms of chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension (CTEPH), a condition caused by old blood clots in the lungs that make it hard to breathe. Use this graphic to raise awareness about the risk of CTEPH. Learn more about the warning signs and treatments for CTEPH and use our downloadable toolkit to raise awareness.
Read Pathlight, a Members-only Benefit
When you join the Pulmonary Hypertension Association, you join a vibrant community that supports pulmonary hypertension patients, their families, caregivers, physicians and researchers. PHA empowers patients to live their best lives with PH, and we work with leading scientists to bring us closer to a cure. Patients and caregivers can join PHA for only $15, which includes a subscription to our quarterly print magazine, Pathlight. Read a free copy of the summer Pathlight and become a member today to receive four issues a year in your mailbox!
Anniversary Milestone Celebrates PH Care Centers
The Pulmonary Hypertension Association began its PH Care Centers initiative in 2011 to raise the quality of care and outcomes for people with pulmonary hypertension. This network of accredited centers with special expertise in PH care now numbers 82 and is growing every year. Find a list of accredited care centers by state.
Try Yoga and Other Exercises for the PH Patient
One of the best things you can do to relieve stress is to maintain your health. To help you exercise safely at home, the Pulmonary Hypertension Association developed five exercise videos to help people with PH build strength, maintain flexibility and improve stamina. Each video comes with a downloadable PDF with questions for your doctor before you begin to exercise. To learn more about yoga for the PH patient, download the PDF and watch the video. Additional videos may be viewed in the exercise section of PHA Classroom.
What’s Your Best Way to Eat Healthy During the Holidays?
Maintaining a low-sodium diet is important for people with pulmonary hypertension. Consuming large amounts of sodium can cause fluid retention and edema. Share your favorite healthy recipe or tips that follow the guidelines in our download on sodium, diet and nutrition.
Congenital Heart Defects Can Cause PH
People born with congenital heart disease, such as ventricular or atrial septal defects, can develop pulmonary hypertension. Up to 10% of congenital heart disease patients may develop PH as infants, children or adults. Sometimes when heart problems go undiagnosed, adults can be diagnosed with CHD and PH at the same time. Early diagnosis can lead to better outcomes. Share this graphic to raise awareness of congenital heart disease and PH and read more in our free PH & CHD brochure.
Watch Webinar Today About PH & Left Heart Disease
Pulmonary hypertension due to left heart disease is often caused by fluid buildup and may be treated with diuretics. For these individuals, symptoms may improve with a low sodium diet and exercise. If PH is caused by heart valve or muscle problems, a doctor may recommend surgery or medications to improve heart function and reduce the high lung pressures that cause PH. To learn more about PH and left heart disease, listen to our PHA Live webinar today.
Resource: Pulmonary Hypertension and Left Heart Disease (pdf)
Newly Diagnosed? Get Your Questions Answered
If you or someone you love recently were diagnosed with pulmonary hypertension, PHA has free digital resources that can help. Download a free copy of “Navigating Pulmonary Hypertension: A Guide for Newly Diagnosed Patients” or order a free print copy of this 60-page booklet to be sent to your home.
Group 5 PH Risk Factors Include Sarcoidosis
Various disorders can cause pulmonary hypertension in which PH is secondary to other diseases, including blood disorders, systemic disorders with lung involvement and metabolic disorders. Sarcoidosis is an inflammatory disease that affects various organs and can lead to PH when increased pressure in the lungs causes weakening and ultimately failure of the right side of the heart. Share this graphic to raise awareness of Group 5 PH, which can also be caused by such conditions as sickle cell anemia, chronic hemolytic anemia, splenectomy (spleen removal) and certain metabolic disorders.
Research Focus Strong Throughout PHA History
From the association’s beginnings in 1991, research has been a primary focus. As the Pulmonary Hypertension Association celebrates its 30-year anniversary, the PHA Registry (PHAR) is the largest active U.S.-based, prospective and longitudinal observational pulmonary hypertension patient registry. As of this fall, participating PHA-accredited PH Care Centers have enrolled over 1,700 individuals with PAH, CTEPH and pediatric PH due to developmental lung disease. Goals of the PHAR are to support research towards measuring and improving quality of care, understand risk factors for patient outcomes, and support clinical research for new therapies. Learn more about the PHA’s research program, including PHAR.
PHA Supports PH Patients and Caregivers
More than 200 Pulmonary Hypertension Association support groups in every state and Puerto Rico provide knowledge, support and empowerment to pulmonary hypertension patients, their families and caregivers. All support groups are now virtual, so you can join groups anywhere. There also are opportunities to receive support by email or phone. Visit our website to learn more. Subscribe to PHA News to get a biweekly listing of upcoming meetings to join.
Excessive Nosebleeds May Indicate PH Risk
Hereditary hemorrhagic telangiectasia (HHT), a genetic disorder that often features excessive bleeding, can lead to elevated pulmonary artery pressure, and ultimately, pulmonary hypertension. Frequent nosebleeds are a sign of HHT. Not everyone with PH may realize they have HHT, and those with HHT may not know the risks of developing PH. Share this graphic and learn more about the connection between the two diseases.
Share the Connection Between Scleroderma and PH
Connective tissue diseases such as lupus or scleroderma increase the risk for Group 1 pulmonary hypertension. Use this graphic on social media to raise awareness about such risks. Watch our video on the relationship between connective tissue disease and PH, and download our free brochures on PH & Scleroderma and PH & Lupus to learn more.
What Are the Common Symptoms of PH?
Fatigue is a common symptom of all types of pulmonary hypertension (PH). Before diagnosis, 27% of PH patients reported fatigue. High blood pressure in the lungs also causes other common symptoms, such as fatigue and breathlessness. Learn about the symptoms of PH, which often are misdiagnosed as asthma or being out of shape. Share this graphic to raise awareness.
Thank You PH Care Team!
|Today we give special thanks to our health care providers, family, friends and caregivers who help support individuals with pulmonary hypertension throughout the year. Download our special “Thank you” coloring pages and use the hashtags #PHorever Thankful to thank your care team.
Look for Signs of PH With Sleep Apnea
Pulmonary hypertension (often Group 3 PH) is a common complication of sleep apnea. Sleep apnea-associated PH usually is mild to moderate and treatable. Continuous positive airway pressure can improve your PH and effectively treat your apnea. Talk to your doctor if you have sleep apnea and experience PH symptoms (breathlessness, fatigue, light headedness, swelling in the ankles, legs, abdomen or arms, and chest pain). Share our social media graphic to raise awareness of this common condition and the risk for PH. Download our free brochure to learn more.
Stimulant Use a Risk Factor in PH
Diet pills, methamphetamine and other stimulants can increase the risk of pulmonary arterial hypertension, Group 1 PH. People with idiopathic PH are seven times more likely to report stimulant use than those whose PH is associated with other conditions. Download this graphic to share awareness of the link between PH and meth use. To learn more, download our PH & Methamphetamine brochure and view PHA’s Ask the Expert video in English or Spanish.
Making an Impact Throughout the Pandemic
Download our 2020 Annual Report to read about how PHA made an impact during the pandemic. As the World Health Organization announced a worldwide pandemic, PHA launched an online resource center COVID-19 and Pulmonary Hypertension and the wellness series “PHA Connects: COVID-19 and Your Health.” The series was designed to provide education, social opportunities and support programming after we made the difficult decision to cancel PHA 2020 International PH Conference and Scientific Sessions. Thanks to our steadfast and committed volunteers, we’ve stayed connected in 2021 through support groups, webinars and fundraisers that serve and unite our community. Next year, we hope to see all of you in Atlanta at PHA 2022, where we will be “PHacing the Future Together.”