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Chronic Thromboembolic Pulmonary Hypertension Treatment Options

Temple Health offers 1 of only 5 programs in the nation specializing in CTEPH care. Here, patients with this complex condition have access to Pulmonary Thromboendarterectomy (PTE), the only treatment proven to correct CTEPH. Temple has treated more than 100 patients to date using this sophisticated procedure and has achieved an 97% overall success rate.

The goal of PTE surgery is simple: remove the blood clots that are causing breathing problems, restore circulation to the lungs, and improve quality of life. Within several weeks after surgery, the majority of patients will:

  • Experience a major improvement in shortness of breath
  • No longer need pulmonary hypertension medications
  • Need only a minimal dose diuretic
  • Function without the need for supplemental oxygen

In select cases, a patient may not qualify for PTE because the clots cannot be easily reached or there is an increased risk due to other medical conditions. These individuals may benefit from medications that reduce pulmonary pressure, or balloon pulmonary angioplasty to open up the blocked pulmonary artery.

Your physician will discuss medical treatment with you and perform specialized tests to determine if PTE could help you. 

In the following video, Paul Forfia, MD, discusses the diagnosis of CTEPH and how it can be treated with pulmonary thromboendarterectomy (PTE). Dr. Forfia's discussion of PTE includes the surgical process and recovery timeline:

Paul Forfia, MD – PTE Surgery for CTEPH – Temple Heart & Vascular Institute