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WHAT IS FEN-PHEN:
Fen-Phen is the common name of a weight loss protocol heavily marketed in the 1990's that combined phentermine with either fenfluramine (Pondimin) or dexfenfluramine (Redux).
Pondimin and Redux were shown to cause damage to the mitral and aortic heart valves; and a serious lung condition called primary pulmonary hypertension (PPH) now known as idiopathic pulmonary arterial hypertension (IPAH).
Pondimin and Redux were withdrawn from the U.S. market in 1997.
WHAT IS PULMONARY HYPERTENSION:
Pulmonary hypertension is elevated blood pressures that affects the arteries in your lungs and the right side of your heart.
WHAT IS PRIMARY PULMONARY HYPERTENSION (PPH) also known as IDIOPATHIC PULMONARY ARTERIAL HYPERTENSION (IPAH):
Pulmonary hypertension is characterized as primary or idiopathic when all known causes which can be ruled out have been ruled out.
Known causes which must be ruled out before pulmonary hypertension is considered to be PPH / IPAH:
Left-sided heart disease such as aortic or mitral valve disease, failure of the lower left chamber of the heart, inherited risks for PH, congenital heart defects including Eisenmenger syndrome (large hole between the two lower chambers of the heart), portal hypertension, scleroderma, lupus, HIV, cirrhosis, use of methamphetamines or cocaine, exposure to certain toxins, and lung diseases such as: COPD, emphysema, pulmonary fibrosis, interstitial fibrosis (such as silicosis, asbestosis, and granulomatous), significant sleep apnea, long-term exposure to high altitudes, and chronic blood clots in the lungs. Other possible causes include: certain blood disorders, sarcoidosis, glycogen storage disease, and tumors pressing against pulmonary arteries.
WHAT HARM CAN PULMONARY HYPERTENSION CAUSE:
PH can lead to complications including: right-sided heart enlargement, heart failure, blood clots in the lungs, heart arrhythmia, and bleeding in the lungs.
Pulmonary hypertension requires on-going medical treatment. The disease is potentially fatal if it cannot be effectively treated.
TESTS USED TO DIAGNOSE PULMONARY HYPERTESION:
Early testing often includes chest x-rays and EKGs. If pulmonary hypertension is suspected further tests may include:
Treatment For Pulmonary Hypertension:
Although there is no cure, treatments include prescription medication and in some cases, surgery:
Prescription Medications used to treat pulmonary hypertension:
Surgeries Used To Treat PH:
Atrial septostomy - open-heart surgery to create an opening between the upper left and right chambers of the heart to relieve the pressure on the right side of the heart.
Transplantation - lung or heart transplantation for younger people with PPH / IPAH who are otherwise a good candidate for transplantation.
Pulmonary thromboendarterectomy - removing blood clots from the lung's arteries.
FEN PHEN LAWYER, CYNTHIA K. GARRETT, ATTORNEY AT LAW
CRITERIA FOR FREE INITIAL CASE REVIEW
1. Proof of use of Pondimin or Redux.
2. A diagnosis of:
3. And, no known alternative causation factors are present.