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What happens to the body with pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH)?

When people have pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH), the walls of the pulmonary arteries are thick, narrow and stiff. This makes it harder for blood to flow through. PAH also means the stiff arteries can't relax and widen to allow more blood through when extra oxygen is needed, like during exercise. This raises blood pressure in the arteries. Blood clots can also form in the arteries, making it even harder for blood to flow through. The right side of the heart then has to work extra hard to push blood through the stiff, narrow or blocked arteries. This extra work tires out the heart, and without treatment it can't pump properly.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.