Types of Pulmonary Hypertension

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), there are five types of pulmonary hypertension.

  • Type 1, which is called pulmonary arterial hypertension, includes PAH with no known cause (idiopathic PAH), inherited PAH, and PAH caused by congenital heart disease, thyroid disease, HIV, autoimmune diseases, or certain drugs.
  • Type 2 pulmonary hypertension is caused by diseases that affect the left side of the heart (e.g., mitral valve prolapse).
  • Type 3 pulmonary hypertension results from breathing conditions, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), scarring in lung tissue (interstitial lung disease), and obstructive sleep apnea (OSA).
  • Type 4 pulmonary hypertension is caused by blood disorders, such as clotting disorders and sickle cell anemia.
  • Type 5 pulmonary hypertension is caused by other medical conditions (e.g., sarcoidosis) or by a tumor pressing on the pulmonary arteries.

Publication Review By: Stanley J. Swierzewski, III, M.D.

Published: 01 Mar 2010

Last Modified: 01 Oct 2015