What is Pulmonary Vascular Disease?

Pulmonary Vascular Disease

is the term used to describe a set of health conditions all of which affect the circulation of blood within the lungs. These include pulmonary edema, pulmonary embolism, pulmonary arterial hypertension, chronic thromboembolic disease, arteriovenous malformations, and pulmonary veno-occlusive disease. Let’s have a look at the brief description of these major conditions that fall under the category of

Pulmonary Vascular Disease.


Pulmonary Edema:

This condition is

characterized by the accumulation of fluid in the alveoli or air sacs of the lungs.

Edema means swelling of a body part due to excessive build up of fluid inside it. Pulmonary edema is a result of heart failure which in turn increases the blood pressure in the blood vessels passing through the lungs. Due to the high pressure, the fluid is pushed into the air sacs causing breathlessness.


Pulmonary Embolism:

A large pulmonary embolism at the bifurcation of the pulmonary artery.
When the flow of blood through the artery or blood vessel in the lung gets blocked suddenly, it results in pulmonary embolism. It occurs when a blood clot having travelled from the leg or pelvis enters the blood. In normal conditions, the clot should break up in the bloodstream. Symptoms include pain in the chest, rapid pulse rate, difficulty breathing and fainting spells.


Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension:

In this respiratory condition,

abnormally high blood pressure is seen in pulmonary artery.

Pulmonary artery carries deoxygenated (oxygen less) blood from the heart to lungs for oxygenation (filling with oxygen). High blood pressure in this artery is a result of the narrowing of smaller arteries within the lungs. This in turn increases the resistance to the flow of blood through lungs. Fainting, shortness of breath, pain in the chest, dizziness and swelling of the legs and/or ankles are the symptoms.


Chronic Thromboembolic Disease:

This lung condition is characterized by the presence of previous blood clots in the blood vessels inside the lungs.


Arteriovenous Malformations or AVMS:

Arteriovenous MalformationAs the name indicates, this is a medical condition that is present at birth and is characterized by tangled parts of the circulatory system. Circulatory system comprises of capillaries or tiny blood vessels, arteries and veins that carry blood from and to heart. The tangled arteries and veins interrupt the normal blood flow in organs.


Pulmonary Veno-Occlusive Disease:

It is considered to be a very rare condition of extremely high blood pressure in the lungs. Although in most of the cases, the exact cause is unknown, viral infections or other conditions such as leukemia, chemotherapy, and lupus may be the reason for the occurrence of this disease.

Treatment options for

Pulmonary Vascular Disease

vary depending on the type of disorder and the extent to which it has affected the lungs and other organs.

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