Will the latest therapies prove beneficial? Reviewing the clinical aspects of HIV- associated pulmonary hypertension
June 01, 2006
abstract: Pulmonary hypertension is an increasingly recognized complication of HIV disease. Echocardiography is the most useful imaging modality for an early diagnosis; the most frequent findings are systolic flattening of the interventricular septum, right atrial and right ventricular enlargement, and tricuspid regurgitation. Other components of the workup include comprehensive laboratory tests (complete blood cell count, measurement of prothombin time and partial thromboplastin time, hepatic profile, etc), chest radiography, pulmonary function tests with arterial blood gas analysis, ventilation-perfusion lung scanning, and spiral CT scanning. The treatment of this condition is complex and controversial, and the drug of choice has not yet been established. The therapies currently used include antiretroviral agents, bosentan, calcium channel blockers, epoprostenol, and sildenafil.