Revolutionary Treatment Lowers Blood PressureMain Category: Hypertension
Also Included In: Cardiovascular / Cardiology
Article Date: 15 Feb 2013
A novel drug-free treatment consisting of "blasting" nerves in the kidneys with radio waves is helping to decrease high blood pressure in patients.
The method, known as renal denervation (RDN), is administered for a length of 45 minutes under local anesthetic and is the first new alternative treatment for patients who cannot lower their blood pressure using traditional drugs.
Around 70 million adults in the United States are affected by high blood pressure - or hypertension - which makes the body pump blood too strongly through the arteries and heart.
Dangerous health issues associated with hypertension include:
High frequency signals then burn off highly active nerves, boosting blood flow to the organs and decreasing levels of a hormone associated with high blood pressure.
Dr James Wilkinson, a consultant cardiologist at Southampton General Hospital said:
"This treatment really is a milestone in the field as, for the first time, we are able to say to people who cannot control their blood pressure with medication now have an option to limit their risk of stroke or heart disease. The device allows us to gain access to the kidneys and fire short bursts of radio waves to burn overactive nerves, meaning we can bring blood pressure down to normal levels in most patients."
Just yesterday, Dr Wilkinson and Dr Allan Odurny, a consultant radiologist, performed the first two treatments together at Southampton General Hospital. Three additional cases are set to be conducted over the coming weeks.
This revolutionary technique is being tested at several UK centers as part of a global study by the Baker IDI Heart and Diabetes Institute in Australia and published in the American Heart Association Journal, Circulaton.
The newest research reveals that RDN is effective and safe in reducing blood pressure up to one year following the procedure with no long-term danger to the heart or kidneys.
Written by Kelly Fitzgerald
Copyright: MediLexicon International Ltd
Original article posted on Medical News Today.
Articles not to be reproduced without permission of Medical News Today