7 Facts About Scleroderma-related PAH
Scleroderma (SSc) is a rare but progressive autoimmune disease that mainly affects women between the ages of 20 and 50, although men and children can also develop the disease. Many patients who have scleroderma also develop pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH). Find out more:
1. According to the Scleroderma Foundation, there are an estimated 300,000 scleroderma patients in the U.S.
2. It is estimated that between 8 and 30 percent of scleroderma patients will develop PAH.
3. There are about 200,000 new cases of PAH reported each year in the U.S.
4. Pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) is categorized into 4 groups, with 1 being the mildest and 4 being the most severe.
5. The relationship between the PH and scleroderma is due to the nature of scleroderma — it attacks the connective tissues in the body’s major organs.
6. While the skin is predominantly affected by scleroderma, many patients struggle with lung problems due to the disease.
7. The coexistence of PH and scleroderma happens due to the thickening of connective tissue around blood vessels. When blood vessels are narrowed in the lungs, the right ventricle of the heart must work harder to pump blood to the lungs.
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