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Format: 04/19/2014
Format: 04/19/2014

News

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: Doctor and physician assistant hit stairs for mountain climb

Thursday, January 21st, 2010

By Jack Kelly, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
 

Dr. Ray Benza, a physician at Allegheny General Hospital, and Jessica Lazar, a physician assistant who works with him on the hospital's cardiovascular clinical care team, plan to climb Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania next month to raise funds for research into pulmonary hypertension, and to experience briefly what their patients suffer every day.

Pulmonary hypertension is high blood pressure in the arteries of the lungs. It can lead to heart failure. There currently is no cure, but there are a number of treatments that can mitigate the effects of the disease.

"Pulmonary hypertension begins when tiny arteries in your lungs ... become narrowed, blocked or destroyed," says the Web site of the Mayo Clinic, mayoclinic.com. "This makes it harder for blood to flow through your lungs, which raises pressure within the pulmonary arteries. As the pressure builds, your heart's lower right chamber (right ventricle) must work harder to pump blood through your lungs, eventually causing your heart muscle to weaken and sometimes fail completely."

To read more, visit the Post-Gazette website.

 

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