Leaders WHO shaped the history of PH


Pat Paton

Pat Paton, RN

In 1987, Pat Paton, RN, began noticing health problems and was passing out unexplainably. Her husband, Jerry Paton, began taking her to see doctors, all of whom were unable to diagnose her illness.  After one particularly frightening episode, Pat’s husband put Pat in the back seat of their car and drove from their home in Indiana to the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. It was here that Dr. Michael McGoon diagnosed Pat with pulmonary hypertension. As Dr. McGoon later told the story, “It was hard at that time.  With no disease-specific treatments, there was little that a doctor could offer his patients.” 

After her diagnosis, Pat and Jerry moved to Florida to spend what they thought would be their last days together. To deal with her own isolation, Pat (with the help of her sister Judy) spent two years looking for another patient. When she hosted the “Kitchen Table meeting” in January 1991, it was the first time she met another patient.

Learn more about Pat Paton, RN



Mike McGoon

Michael McGoon, MD

Michael McGoon, MD, Pat's doctor, went on to develop PH Clinicians and Researchers, serve as Chair of PHA’s Scientific Leadership Council and serve on PHA’s Board of Trustees. Today, Dr. McGoon chairs the REVEAL Registry, gathering patient information from over 60 PH Centers to develop more effective treatments for pulmonary hypertension and better patient care. He remains Pat’s doctor.

Pat Paton and Dr. Michael McGoon have traveled a two-decade journey with PHA that has seen PAH move from a desert in which there were no treatments and fewer than 200 diagnosed patients in the U.S., to a much richer landscape today with twelve treatments, a greater chance for patient diagnosis, increased research and over 12,000 treating physicians.

Learn more about Micheal McGoon, MD

FacebookTwitterInstagram iconLinkedInYouTube

For optimal viewing of, please use a standards-compliant browser such as Google Chrome or Firefox.

The information provided on the PHA website is provided for general information only. It is not intended as legal, medical or other professional advice, and should not be relied upon as a substitute for consultations with qualified professionals who are familiar with your individual needs.

801 Roeder Road, Ste. 1000, Silver Spring, MD 20910   Patient-to-Patient Support Line: 1-800-748-7274
    Privacy Policy    Provide Feedback & Report Bugs

Designed by Matrix Group International, Inc.® | © 2015 Pulmonary Hypertension Association. All Rights Reserved.


The National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD) awarded PHA the Abbey S. Meyers Leadership Award in 2012 for outstanding service to PHA members in advocacy, education and other key areas.