Clinical Features and Outcomes of Patients with Sarcoidosis-associated Pulmonary Hypertension.
The presence of pulmonary hypertension (PH) significantly worsens outcomes in patients with advanced sarcoidosis, but its optimal management is unknown. We aimed to characterize a large sarcoidosis-associated pulmonary hypertension (SAPH) cohort to better understand patient characteristics, clinical outcomes, and management strategies including treatment with PH therapies. Patients at Duke University Medical Center with biopsy-proven sarcoidosis and SAPH confirmed by right heart catheterization (RHC) were identified from 1990-2010. Subjects were followed for up to 11 years and assessed for differences by treatment strategy for their SAPH, including those who were not treated with PH-specific therapies. Our primary outcomes of interest were change in 6-minute walk distance (6MWD) and change in N-terminal pro-brain natriuretic peptide (NT-proBNP) by after therapy. We included 95 patients (76% women, 86% African American) with SAPH. Overall, 70% of patients had stage IV pulmonary sarcoidosis, and 77% had functional class III/IV symptoms. Median NT-proBNP value was elevated (910 pg/mL), and right ventricular dysfunction was moderate/severe in 55% of patients. Median values for mean pulmonary artery pressure (49 mmHg) and pulmonary vascular resistance (8.5 Woods units) were consistent with severe pulmonary hypertension. The mortality rate over median 3-year follow-up was 32%. Those who experienced a clinical event and those who did not had similar overall echocardiographic findings, hemodynamics, 6MWD and NT-proBNP at baseline, and unadjusted analysis showed that only follow-up NT-proBNP was associated with all-cause hospitalization or mortality. A sign test to evaluate the difference between NT-Pro-BNP before and after PH therapy produced evidence that a significant difference existed between the median pre- and post-NT-Pro-BNP (-387.0 (IQR: -1373.0-109), p = 0.0495). Use of PH-specific therapy may be helpful in selected patients with SAPH and pre-capillary pulmonary vascular disease. Prospective trials are needed to characterize responses to PH-specific therapy in this subset of patients with SAPH.
Parikh, KS; Dahhan, T; Nicholl, L; Ruopp, N; Pomann, G-M; Fortin, T; Tapson, VF; Rajagopal, S
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