Friday 18 May 2012

Renal Denervation Might Protect the Kidneys

A simple procedure lowers blood pressure in kidney disease patients

Disrupting certain nerves in the kidneys can safely and effectively lower blood pressure in patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) and hypertension, according to a study appearing in an upcoming issue of the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology (JASN). The findings indicate that the procedure might improve CKD patients’ heart health.

Overactivity of neurons in the sympathetic—or fight or flight—nervous system is very common in patients with CKD. It not only contributes to high blood pressure and heart problems in these patients, but also to worsening of their kidney disease.

Using radio frequency waves in a minimally invasive approach can disrupt the overactive sympathetic nerves of the arteries in the kidneys and lower blood pressure in patients with hypertension and normal kidney function.

According to Dr Markus Schlaich of the Baker IDI Heart & Diabetes Institute, in Melbourne, Australia, where the research was carried out, “These initial findings now open up an entirely new approach to better control blood pressure in CKD and potentially slow down progression of CKD and reduce cardiovascular risk in these patients."