10 Cor Pulmonale Symptoms

By sarah-jane
Reviewed: dr. stavarache
Article Sources Article Sources
  • 1. Garrison, Daniel M., et al. 'Cor Pulmonale.' StatPearls /[Internet/], Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing, 2021, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK430739/
  • 2. Tidy, Colin. 'Cor Pulmonale.' Patient, 30 Dec. 2016, patient.info/doctor/cor-pulmonale
  • 3. 'Syncope (Fainting).' Johns Hopkins Medicine, Based in Baltimore, Maryland, www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/conditions-and-diseases/syncope-fainting
  • 4. Towers, M. K. 'Chronic Cor Pulmonale.' Postgraduate Medical Journel, vol. 42, 1966, pp. 506-512, pmj.bmj.com/content/postgradmedj/42/490/506.full.pdf
  • 5. 'How Oxygen Affects the Extremities.' Lung Health Instititute, 28 Mar. 2016, lunginstitute.com/blog/oxygen-affects-extremities/
Medical Expert Medical Expert

Cor pulmonale is a condition where the right side of the heart doesn't work as effectively or fails due to changes in its function or structure. This heart condition is caused by an issue in the respiratory system, which leads to high blood pressure in the blood vessels of the lungs.

Factors, such as cigarette smoking, air pollution and various lung diseases, can increase the risk of cor pulmonale. There are several treatment options, which commonly seek to address underlying lung conditions. Early cor pulmonale symptoms are typically nonspecific.1Garrison, Daniel M., et al. ‘Cor Pulmonale.’ StatPearls /[Internet/], Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing, 2021, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK430739/


Breathlessness, known medically as dyspnea, is a common symptom of cor pulmonale. People commonly experience shortness of breath on exertion, such as when exercising, walking up stairs or carrying heavy items. Some people may feel breathless with minimal exertion.

Being short of breath may be among the first symptoms of cor pulmonale that a person notices. Breathlessness may increase over time, though an increase in the severity of feeling breathless isn't necessarily an indication that the primary lung condition is worsening. People generally find that they become less tolerant to exercise and activity.

Cor Pulmonale

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