Renal denervation reduces high blood pressure in resistant cases of hypertension, but does not affect endothelial function and inflammatory markers, revealed a new study. The findings were presented at the 23rd European Meeting on Hypertension and Cardiovascular Protection.
Renal artery denervation, also called renal ablation is a minimally invasive procedure where the nerves in the renal artery (the artery supplying to the kidney) are disrupted. This procedure has been found to be useful in patients with hypertension that is resistant to usual treatment. It reduces blood pressure in these patients and the effect has been maintained for more than 24 months.
AdvertisementHypertension is known to be associated with inflammation of blood vessels and endothelial dysfunction (endothelium is the inner layer of the blood vessels). Researchers carried out a study to determine whether treatment with renal denervation can also reduce vascular inflammation or affect endothelial function.
A study was conducted in 63 patients with resistant hypertension at an average age of 61 years. At the beginning of the study, the study participants had a high body mass index, and were taking an average of 4.6 medications for hypertension.
After renal denervation, BP was significantly reduced from 169/90 mmHg at baseline () to 156/84 mmHg three months following the procedure. This reduction was sustained even at 12 months follow-up. Also, there was no significant change in the heart rate.
The researchers found that there was no significant change in endothelial function and various inflammatory markers from the baseline at the end of 3 months after the administration of renal denervation. Only the level of nonesterified fatty acid (NEFA) significantly decreased, which was possibly due to reduced nervous activity in the adipose tissue following the procedure. The activity of the sympathetic nervous system was reduced in the muscle and kidneys, but the whole body sympathetic activity did not change significantly over 3 months.
The researchers thus concluded that though renal denervation causes a reduction in blood pressure, it does not affect vascular inflammation and endothelial function.