Frequently Asked Questions about PPH

What is PPH? Primary pulmonary hypertension (PPH) is a chronic, progressive disease affecting the arteries in the lungs. It is also called primary arterial hypertension, or PAH.

What are the symptoms? Symptoms of PPH may include shortness of breath following exertion; excessive fatigue; dizziness, fainting and weakness; swelling in the ankles and abdomen (edema); bluish lips and skin; and chest pain.

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What causes PPH? No one knows precisely what causes PPH. Genetics plays a role in some cases of PPH. Exposure to toxins has also been linked to PPH. Aminorex (European diet pills), fenfluramine, (part of the defective diet drug Fen-Phen), dexfenfluramine (Redux), and toxic rapeseed oil have been shown to cause PPH.

How common is PPH? PPH is a rare disease. Although the true number of cases is unknown, estimates range from 1-2 new cases per million per year in the U.S.

Who is most at risk? PPH is more common in women between the ages of 21 and 40. However, the disease can affect anyone at any age — including young children. People who took Fen/Phen or Redux for any period of time have an increased risk of developing the disease.

How is PPH treated? There is no cure for PPH. Treatment options range from oral and intravenous medications to heart and heart-lung transplants.

What is the prognosis for people with PPH? How early the disease was diagnosed, the patient's age at diagnosis, and response to treatment all affect prognosis. Past studies have shown that the median period of survival is about three years after diagnosis. However, new treatments are substantially extending life expectancy. Many experts believe PPH patients may live 10 or more years after diagnosis in the not-too-distant future.

Where can I learn more about PPH? The Pulmonary Hypertension Association offers information and resources for people with PPH and their family members as well as for medical professionals.

Why should I talk to a lawyer? The defective diet drugs Fen-Phen and Redux, which were removed from the market in 1997, have been linked to the development of PPH. An attorney who is knowledgeable in PPH litigation may be able to help you recover financial compensation from the makers of these defective drugs.

What does filing a PPH lawsuit mean to my life? It means you will have someone in your corner, fighting for you. We will keep you informed throughout the process about the progress of your case.

How much does it cost to hire a defective drug lawyer? We represent PPH clients on a contingency basis. Clients pay no legal fees unless we win financial compensation for them. If we lose, you pay nothing. If we win, the fees come out of the money we recover for you. To learn more, please contact us today to arrange a free consultation.

From offices in San Francisco, California, the lawyers of Hersh & Hersh represent PPH victims throughout the nation.

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