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Pulmonary hypertension (PH) is an important cause of morbidity and mortality, however, the incidence and the clinical profile of this condition remain poorly understood. We aimed to describe clinical and hemodynamic characteristics and to provide estimates for the prevalence of patients diagnosed for PH according to WHO classification of PH.

Design and Method:

Patients aged more than 18 years at diagnosis with PH were enrolled at 3 centers in South Korea from Dec 1, 2012, to Dec 31, 2014. Patient and disease characteristics, including age at diagnosis and at enrollment, sex, presenting symptoms, PH classification, comorbid disorders, medical and family history, and functional class were recorded.


531 of 733 patients who had confirmed PH (defined as peak pulmonary artery pressure (PAP) ≥ 37 mmHg) were entered in the registry. Median age was 69.7 years; 57% (300 of 531) were female. Estimated Peak PAP, and pulmonary vascular resistance by echocardiography were 49 ± 11.8 mmHg, 2.9 ± 1.8W.U., respectively. Most of patients were asymptomatic (59%) and were in good functional status (less than NYHA II, 350 of 423 (82.7%)), on the other hand, dyspnea (26%) and chest pain (12%) were the most frequent symptoms. Most patients had acquired PH, which were Group II (PH owing to left heart disease, n = 399, 75%) or Group III (PH owing to lung disease and/or hypoxia, n = 61, 12%). Only 19 patients (4%) had pulmonary arterial hypertension (Group I). In subgroup, Group II patients had a higher prevalence of hypertension (p < 0.01), history of angina (p = 0.02). Interestingly, Group IV (Chronic thromboembolic PH) patients were more common in history of alcohol (p = 0.019).


Our registry data identifies important clinical features of PH, which is mostly related to acquired etiologies (esp. left heart disease). Moreover, despite severe PH, most patients were in good functional status, which is consistent with preserved right-heart function.

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