Which imaging studies are indicated in the diagnosis of idiopathic pulmonary arterial hypertension (IPAH)?

Updated: Jul 08, 2020
  • Author: Ronald J Oudiz, MD, FACP, FACC, FCCP; Chief Editor: Zab Mosenifar, MD, FACP, FCCP  more...
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Imaging studies - Essential

  • Chest radiography: A chest radiograph may help identify secondary causes of, or contributors to, pulmonary hypertension.

  • Echocardiography: The echocardiogram can estimate right ventricular (RV) systolic pressure and, more importantly, the degree of right ventricular enlargement, as well as the presence of a pericardial effusion. Equally important, the echocardiogram helps to exclude secondary causes of, or contributors to, pulmonary hypertension, such as left-sided heart disease (eg, left ventricular dysfunction, valvular heart disease).

  • Nuclear lung ventilation/perfusion scanning: This is performed to exclude chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension (Group IV PH).

Imaging studies - Conditional

  • Chest computed tomography (CT)

  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)

  • Pulmonary angiography

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