A symposium sponsored by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Clinical Center Critical Care Medicine Department (CCMD) and the Pulmonary Hypertension Association (PHA) created a unique opportunity for medical experts to discuss how to recognize and manage PH patients with complex presentations of the disease, and publicly debate a controversial topic: will PH patients with underlying and associated conditions benefit from PAH-specific therapies.

The joint symposium, Challenges in Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension: Breathing, Beating, and Beyond, took place May 19 at the National Library of Medicine’s Lister Hill Center on the NIH Campus in Bethesda, Md. Hosted by Michael A. Solomon, M.D. and Jason M. Elinoff, M.D., faculty in the Critical Care Medicine Department and clinical investigators in the NIH Clinical Center’s pulmonary arterial hypertension program, the event drew nearly 100 cardiologists, pulmonologists and other clinicians. Top national and international PH specialists discussed lung and heart-related PH topics as well as the pros and cons of treating PH due to chronic lung disease with PAH-specific therapies and treating heart failure with preserved ejection fraction (left-heart failure where blood pumped remains greater than 50 percent with each beat) with PAH-specific therapies.

PHA expects the discussions to lead to broader conversations at its 2018 International PH Conference and Scientific Sessions as well as more involvement from patients in advocating for new and expanded clinical trials.

Read more about the symposium here.