What is it about?

This is a perspective piece describing the risks and benefits of a procedure that deactivates the nerves leading to the kidneys, which can help to lower blood pressure. Several recent studies have shown that this procedure effectively lowers blood pressure and many patients. However, the amount of blood pressure lowering is modest and not all people see an improvement in their blood pressure after the procedure. This needs to be balanced with the fact that the procedure is invasive and has risks associated with it.

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Why is it important?

A recent international trial demonstrated that the study was effective in people with difficult to control blood pressure. The procedure is not yet approved for use in all countries, including the United States.

Perspectives

Certain patients are likely to benefit from this procedure, such as people who cannot take another blood pressure medication for personal or medical reasons and those who are sensitive to the blood pressure-lowering effects of the procedure, but more work is needed to identify which patients are most likely to benefit.

Jordana Cohen
University of Pennsylvania

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This page is a summary of: Renal Denervation for the Treatment of Hypertension, Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology, June 2021, American Society of Nephrology, DOI: 10.2215/cjn.03070221.
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