World PH Day Raises Awareness of Pulmonary Hypertension’s Global Impact

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Members of the world pulmonary hypertension community will come together on May 5 to share their stories, recognize medical professionals and spread hope.

The Pulmonary Hypertension Association (PHA) joins organizations around the world on Tuesday, May 5, to recognize World PH Day.

World PH Day is May 5

World PH Day puts a spotlight on the global impact of pulmonary hypertension (PH), a rare, complex, life-threatening disease. PH has no cure and affects more than 75 million adults and children of all ethnicities globally. PH causes symptoms that include shortness of breath, fatigue and chest pain.

The Pulmonary Hypertension Association (PHA) joins organizations around the world on Tuesday, May 5 to recognize World PH Day.

World PH Day puts a spotlight on the global impact of pulmonary hypertension (PH), a rare, complex, life-threatening disease. PH has no cure and affects more than 75 million adults and children of all ethnicities globally. PH, or high blood pressure in the lungs, causes symptoms that include shortness of breath, fatigue and chest pain.

Without treatment, the average length of survival is under three years.

PH can exist alone or in association with many other conditions. In the developed world, PH is most associated with left heart disease. Other PH-associated conditions and risks include connective tissue disorders, blood clots to the lungs, HIV, sickle cell anemia, COPD, sarcoidosis and living in high altitudes. It has also been associated with methamphetamine use.

The disease is often underdiagnosed and misunderstood. For example, many people with PH are misdiagnosed with more common illnesses, such as asthma. Symptoms aren’t specific to PH and can lead to dangerous delays in a correct diagnosis. While there is no cure, accurate, early diagnosis and access to correct treatment can improve a patient’s quality of life and life expectancy.

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, World PH Day events take place virtually again this year — recognizing the efforts of the PH community to protect lungs and the medical professionals who treat PH and COVID-19.

PHA encourages the global PH community to raise awareness on social media through posts using the #WorldPHDay2021 hashtag that describe PH and common symptoms.

“World PH Day raises awareness about the worldwide impact of this disease and rallies the global PH community to share its collective story of hope and advocacy,” says Colleen Brunetti, M.Ed., C.H.C., chair, PHA Board of Trustees. “With the COVID-19 pandemic still ongoing, this year’s awareness day has a special meaning. Now more than ever is the time to rally as one global community. Now is the time to care for one another by following scientific guidelines around immunizations, mask wearing, hygiene, and social distancing. We also need to work together to remind family, friends, and governments that the rare disease community needs special consideration as things begin to open up. May 2021 continue to bring more advocacy, research and hope."

Individuals can visit the World PH Day section on PHA's website for more information about PH and to learn how they can participate in this year’s campaign. PHA’s World PH Day section includes a digital toolkit with educational messages, images, a Facebook frame and other social media resources. Spanish and French resources are also available.

ABOUT THE PULMONARY HYPERTENSION ASSOCIATION
Headquartered in Silver Spring, Maryland, the Pulmonary Hypertension Association (PHA) is the oldest and largest nonprofit patient association dedicated to the pulmonary hypertension (PH) community. Pulmonary hypertension is a rare, chronic and life-threatening disease of the lungs for which no cure currently exists.

PHA’s mission is to extend and improve the lives of those affected by PH. To achieve this mission, PHA engages people with PH and their families, caregivers, health care providers, and researchers worldwide who work together to advocate for the PH community, provide support to patients, caregivers and families, offer up- to-date education and information on PH, improve quality patient care, and fund and promote research. For more information, visit phassociation.org and phassociation.org/worldphday and connect with PHA on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

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Mareike Finck
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