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Pulmonary Hypertension

About Us

Pulmonary vascular disease has traditionally been handled by cardiology or pulmonary specialists, with relatively little collaboration. This has resulted in inferior treatment, inconvenience to the patient and difficulties for treating physicians.

Cardiopulmonary disease affects many different patient populations with a variety of disease states: 

  • Idiopathic pulmonary arterial hypertension  
  • COPD, interstitial lung disease 
  • Heart failure/diastolic dysfunction 
  • Valvular disease  
  • Hemoglobinopathies 
  • Connective tissue disease 
  • Liver disease  
  • HIV infection 

In an effort to provide a successful model for the diagnosis and treatment of cardiopulmonary disease at UPMC, the Pulmonary Hypertension Research Center integrates specialists in cardiology, pulmonary and critical care medicine, and transplant medicine. 

The Pulmonary Hypertension Research Center (PHRC) was developed to provide clinical research and basic research that advance clinical care and treatment of patients with cardiopulmonary disease. 

The Pulmonary Hypertension Research Center is one of the largest programs in the country, offering patients full access to state-of-the-art diagnostics, therapeutics, and opportunities to participate in clinical research.

While the evaluation of affected patients is complex, the UPMC Comprehensive Pulmonary Hypertension Program, offers patients full access to:

  • State-of-the-art diagnostics 
  • Innovative treatments 
  • Opportunities to participate in cutting-edge clinical research

Basic Research

Our researchers are investigating several new therapies including the oral prostanoid treprostinil, the selective endothelin antagonists, and combinations of available agents. Researchers also are investigating the relationship between genetic variations and clinical outcomes in patients with cardiopulmonary disease. Understanding this relationship may help individualize treatments for these patients in the future. 


The program also is researching new technologies to evaluate right heart function and new strategies to identify risk factors that portend a poor outcome in patients with pulmonary hypertension.

Researchers in the Vascular Medicine Institute and the PHRC focus on pathogenesis and treatment of models of pulmonary arterial hypertension, using state of the art imaging and hemodynamic measures.