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Fen-Phen And Pulmonary Hypertension: What's The Connection?

By EmpowHER
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Dr. Skloven explains that women should not take Fen-Phen because of the risk for pulmonary hypertension and other risks to their heart. Dr. Skloven completed both his internship and first year residency at Cornell University Hospitals in New York City and now works at Banner Heart Hospital in Mesa, Arizona.

Dr. Skloven:
The connection between Fen-Phen and pulmonary hypertension, the story goes back about 20 years and goes back to Europe. There was an epidemic of pulmonary hypertension in women and it turned out that most of these women had been on a drug called Fenfluramine, which is basically Fen-Phen, and the connection between this drug and pulmonary hypertension seemed extremely strong.

Fen-Phen is still available for weight loss and if a patient came into my office and asked me whether it was safe to take Fen-Phen I would tell her that I thought it was way too risky because of the possibility of developing not only pulmonary hypertension, but also possibly heart valve disease as well.

I have had a number of patients over the years come to see me because of a heart murmur that was picked up suggesting a heart valve problem and a shortness of breath and in the history, there was a history of having taken Fen-Phen maybe five or ten years ago, and I have a number of patients that have pulmonary hypertension and also valvular heart disease due to this diet drug.

So I think the connection to me is not really controversial. I think it’s pretty direct and it’s not a drug that any doctors would feel safe recommending for weight loss.

About Dr. Z. David Skloven, M.D.:
Dr. Skloven is an Interventional Cardiologist at Banner Heart Hospital in Mesa, Ariz. After graduating from Cornell University with a Bachelor of Arts degree with Honors in Chemistry. Dr. Skloven attended medical school at the University of Maryland School of Medicine, graduating Cum Laude . He did both his internship and first year residency at Cornell University Hospitals in New York City. His second year residency was at the University of California in San Francisco. Dr. Skloven was a Cardiology Fellow under Dr. Eugene Braunwald from 1970 to 1972 in San Diego, California and then spent a year as Director of the La Jolla V.A. Hospital Cardiac Catheterization Lab.

Conditions: Pulmonary Hypertension, High Blood Pressure, Blod Clots, Heart Failure, Valvular Heart Disease

Related Terms: Pulmonary Embolism, Blood Vessel Abnormality, Sjogren's Syndrome, Connective Tissue Disease, Emphysema, COPD, Bronchitis, Leaky Mitral Valve, Echocardiogram, Heart Catheterization, Fen-Phen

Expert: Dr. Z. David Skloven, David Skloven, M.D., Doctor Z David Skloven, Heart Expert Dr. Skloven, Women's Heart Health Specialist Z. David Skloven, M.D.

Expertise: Heart Disease Disease, Heart Disease Risks, Heart Disease Management, Heart Disease Prevention, Blood Pressure Testing, Coronary Artery Disease, Interventional Cardiology, Increased Blood Pressure

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