The Pulmonary Hypertension Association (PHA) this month joins the National Blood Clot Alliance and other health care organizations to spread the word about blood clots. This year’s theme for Blood Clot Awareness Month is “Rise to Stop the Clot.”

The alliance aims to create awareness about a serious, often-overlooked health issue. Most people are unaware of the signs, symptoms and causes of blood clots.

When a blood clot gets caught in one of the arteries that go from the heart to the lungs, it’s called a pulmonary embolism. Up to 5% of people with pulmonary embolisms also have pulmonary hypertension (PH). Blood clots are commonly seen in cases of chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension (CTEPH), causing chest pains, light headedness and trouble breathing.

To help educate the public about risks and prevention, PHA is sharing stories of people with PH related to blood clots:

After a 42-year education career, Missy Storm volunteers for PHA and the hospital where she underwent a pulmonary thromboendarterectomy in 2018. She started by sharing her experiences with medical staff fulfilling continuing education requirements. Many said they had never heard about PH on a personal, emotional level and would change how they approached patients from then on.

PH was no stranger to Alberta Wright when she was diagnosed in 2018. Her oldest sister and a niece died from it. But the full-time teacher’s aide lives life to the fullest, taking nothing for granted. She leads the Pulmonary Hypertension Association’s Detroit Support Group and administers a PHA Facebook support group page.

After a lung transplant saved Lauri Stanfield’s life, she was inspired to give back to PHA. Lauri, who has pulmonary veno-occlusive disease, a rare form of PH, says her contributions honor others with PH. Learn more.

Jamie Prettner is grateful that surgery cured her CTEPH.  While I will always have inflammation and pain from surgery, and will be on blood thinners for the remainder of my life, I know that it is nothing compared to what PH patients go through on a daily basis. I am extremely grateful to have my life back. Although having CTEPH has caused me a lot of pain, sadness and anger, it has allowed me the opportunity to meet such amazing, supportive, people through conferences and support groups. These wonderful people gave me the hope and strength I needed to beat this disease. I will continue to volunteer my time and resources to help PH patients fight this difficult disease.