Kristen Oelschlager, RN


Postpartum pulmonary arterial hypertension

May 01, 2007

Patients with congenital heart disease and pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) are at risk for severe deterioration during pregnancy and delivery. We discuss the case of a 38-year-old woman who presented to the emergency department complaining of dyspnea 6 days after giving birth to her first child via cesare- an section. When PAH is untreated, maternal mortality may exceed 50%, but aggressive PAH treatment offers improved outcomes. Moreover, initial improvement in functional status made with parenteral prostanoids can be maintained with combination oral therapy.