CORTLANDT MANOR, N.Y. -- Elizabeth Barbaretti lost her husband, David, to pulmonary hypertension and is now looking to raise awareness about the disease.
A Strike Out PH event is being held at Brodie's Pub at 3632 Main St. in Mohegan Lake. The event, organized by Barbaretti's friends and family benefits the Pulmonary Hypertension Association which researches the disease and aids those who have it.
Pulmonary hypertension is a rare disease involving high blood pressure in the arteries of the lungs that can lead to heart failure.
"It is often misdiagnosed or diagnosed in its later stages," Barbaretti said. "It can be easily mistaken for other diseases. People often think they have asthma or another heart condition."
While medications can control it, there is no cure. The only effective treatment is a heart transplant.
"We did not realize how sick he was when he passed," Barbaretti said. "He wasn't on the transplant list."
Barbaretti said medication can be expensive, costing about $8,000 a month and has only been around for 30 years. Her husband was diagnosed 10 years before he died.
"He would get shortness of breath and he thought it was allergies," Barbaretti said. "He ignored some of the symptoms, which happens to some people."
Barbaretti would like to see more effective treatments and more genetic research. Her husband's sister died 20 years ago from pulmonary hypertension.
"No one understands why other people get it," Barbaretti said.
Friends and family have been very supportive to Barbaretti since her husband passed.
"This is a wonderful way to honor my husband," Barbaretti said. "We can create something good to come out of his death. It would be wonderful if we could help get more research for pulmonary hypertension."
Barbaretti said any donation goes a long way and those who cannot attend the event can donate at strike-out-ph-benefit-party.eventbrite.com
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