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Jeannie McClelland

Pulmonary Hypertension

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Just thought I'd post a little information about this, for what it is worth.


In my case, they started with the ordinary echocardiogram and saw something they didn't like. Next they did a bubble echocardiogram, in which a "bubble" of saline solution is tracked through the chambers of the heart to rule out any anatomical deformity that could be causing a problem. My heart's structure was OK, but the echocardiogram showed the pressure in my pulmonary artery to be at 'moderate to severe' levels.


So the next step was a right heart catheterization (and the biggest discomfort with that was the room where they did it was kept at arctic temperatures because the machinery's comfort was more important than mine! :rolleyes: )


Well! Happy days were here again. The RHC showed my actual, physically measured, pressures were much lower than the echo demonstrated.


The other value of the RHC is that it can be used as a rough calibration against echocardiograms. They can see a trend on the echos - stable/better/worse and roughly correlate the apparent pressure to the differential observed between the first echo and the RHC. So rather than doing repeat RHC's every time they want to see how you are doing or with medication changes, they just do the echo.


I'm just putting this out for you all because it seems that a number of us have had 'interesting' echo's lately.


Warm hugs for everyone,

Jeannie McClelland

(Retired) ISN Director of Support Services

(Retired) ISN Sclero Forums Manager

(Retired) ISN Blog Manager

(Retired) ISN Assistant News Guide

(Retired) ISN Artist

International Scleroderma Network

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Hello Jeannie


Echos sure are interesting aren't they!


I'm glad the catheter showed better actual results for you than the echo.


Take care.



Amanda Thorpe

ISN Sclero Forums Senior Support Specialist

ISN Video Presentations Manager

ISN Blogger

(Retired) ISN Sclero Forums Assistant Manager

(Retired) ISN Email Support Specialist

International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

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Thanks for posting your experience with all of this, Jeannie!


It's very encouraging. I also was wondering about "later" and you answered that too. Thanks!


In regard to being in the room where they do the actual procedure, I'm going to ask for a warm blanky -- Cold rooms and Raynaud's aren't compatible ;)


Thank you, my friend!

Special Hugs,


Susie Kraft

ISN Support Specialist

ISN Chat Host

International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

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