What is the role of phosphodiesterase type 5 (PDE5) inhibitors in the treatment of cor pulmonale?

Updated: Dec 15, 2017
  • Author: Derek Leong, MD; Chief Editor: Henry H Ooi, MD, MRCPI  more...
  • Print
Answer

Answer

The PDE5 inhibitors function by preventing the degradation of cyclic GMP and subsequently prolonging the vasodilatory effect of nitric oxide. Of these, sildenafil has been intensively studied [31, 32, 33] and was approved by the FDA for treatment of pulmonary hypertension. Sildenafil promotes selective smooth muscle relaxation in lung vasculature. [34]  Tadalafil and vardenafil are other PDE5 inhibitors also approved by the FDA for the treatment of PAH to improve exercise ability. [35]

There are not enough data available yet regarding the efficacy of these drugs in patients with secondary pulmonary hypertension, such as in patients with COPD.


Did this answer your question?
Additional feedback? (Optional)
Thank you for your feedback!