Renal artery ablation happens to be a novel therapy that is now being put to use for the treatment of high blood pressure (hypertension). When hypertension is resistant to drug therapy, renal artery ablation comes into play.
Renal Artery Ablation
Blood pressure is lowered via targeted attenuation of sympathetic tone,but high blood pressure is multifunctional and thereby care needs to be taken on a long term basis. The equipment used in this process affects the blood vessels and renal tubules, which carry two type of signals from the central nervous system to the kidneys namely, afferent and efferent signals.
Surgical sympathectomy was introduced way back in 1950 to cure hypertension but it caused morbidity and hence the treatment needed to be upgraded. The results and clinical trials have shown that renal artery ablation lowers blood pressure significantly and the results can be sustained up to 3 years on a single stretch.
Private Cardiologist Procedure
The procedure involves a flexible catheter and a generator which is used with a Radio Frequency enabled electrode tip. The RF energy is transferred to disrupt the nerves via femoral artery access. In order to disrupt the nerves, a series of 2-minute ablations are to be performed, all of which need to be delivered along each renal artery.
A physical examination is conducted initially and BP is evaluated three times. Renal function is evaluated and the patient is screened for diabetes. Others diseases are also screened for that may disrupt the process and finally artery imaging is done. It is also necessary to consult the patient personally before the treatment and check for his mental health.
Even after the operation is done, the patient is checked for BP levels and heartbeats. After sometime the patient is again checked to see if any adverse effects have occurred or not post the treatment.
Post Results and Risks Involved
The major risks involved are associated with blood pressure only. It is observed that after the operation the results fade away with increasing blood pressures. Generally, the results are nullified fully after 3 years post treatment. It is estimated that nearly 1.56 billion people will be affected by Hypertension worldwide which produces an urgent need to uplift the technology to good effect. SYMPLICITY HTN-2 trial is used to test the patient after a year.
Femoral pseudoneurysm was seen as one long term effect in a patient; apart from this no other long term effect has been observed till now. The failure of treatment can easily lead to short heart cycles as more burden will be laid onto the heart for pumping blood at a greater speed than normal which will ultimately effect the immune system of patient.
Ultimately, his strength and endurance will decrease as the time goes by. Sleep apnoea is another event to which the patient should be diagnosed by at the later stage to nullify ant post effect of renal artery ablation. Chronical renal disease, type 1 diabetes, bleeding risk, secondary forms of hypertension, exclusion of white coat is some of the other contradictions.