Pulmonary Wedge Pressure

The pulmonary wedge pressure is measured with the help of the pulmonary artery catheter. When a patient is offering from mitral valve stenosis that leads to left ventricular failure, measuring the pulmonary wedge pressure will aid is ascertaining the extent of damage on the heart muscles. Pulmonary wedge pressure is directly proportional to the left ventricular particular pressure and therefore when there is an increase in LAP  there will be a simultaneous increase of PCWP.

The normal range for pcwp will be 8 to 10 mmHg and when there is a stenosis or left ventricular failure the readings will vary. Moreover it has been found that the patient has aortic valve stenosis that is associated with regurgitation and mitral regurgitation is also noted then the pulmonary artery catheter will show high level of LAP which consequently increase the PCWP.

In severe cases when the pulmonary wedge pressure level is above 20 mmHg, then the individual will be having symptoms of pulmonary edema or water in lungs. This condition needs immediate medical attention and constant observation as it can also lead to death. Thus with the aid of the PCWP readings the medical practitioner will be able to regulate a dose of diuretics and other medication that is required for reducing pulmonary hypertension and thus bring down pulmonary edema.

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