New surgical procedure cuts high blood pressure better than drugs
Kuala Lumpur: A simple surgical procedure can help those with resistant hypertension to control their high blood pressure.
Recently introduced in Malaysia, Renal nerve ablation or denervation involves destroying certain nerves around the kidney that can help regulate the body`s blood pressure.
This is done by activating radio frequency waves passed through a wire inserted into the renal (kidney) arteries via a small cut in the groin, according to interventional cardiologist Dr Yap Yee Guan.
A 2010 multi-centre clinical trial showed that the destruction of the nerves decreased the blood pressure of patients by an average 32/12mmHg.
Usually taking a new hypertension drug would not cause a decrease of more than 10mmHg, said Dr Yap.
About 84 percent of patients who underwent the ablation had over 10mmHg decrease in their blood pressure, compared with 34 percent of the control group, which continued normal drug treatment.
Follow-ups showed that the decrease in blood pressure was still maintained two years after the procedure with one in five able to decrease their hypertension medications after the procedure.
“It is very safe,” Star Online quoted Dr Yap as saying.
The procedure is currently available at the National Heart Institute and Prince Court Medical Centre, Kuala Lumpur.