Doctors describe a new blood pressure technique as ‘game-changing’ for those with uncontrolled hypertension

The FDA has recently approved a new procedure that could be beneficial for people suffering from treatment-resistant hypertension.

When medications fail to control high blood pressure, a minimally invasive procedure can be performed to target nerves near the kidneys.

Dr. Samin Sharma, an interventional cardiologist and the director of the Mount Sinai Cardiovascular Clinical Institute at Mount Sinai Fuster Heart Hospital in New York City, recently conducted a groundbreaking procedure on a patient suffering from uncontrolled hypertension.

Reducing salt intake by just one teaspoon a day has the same effect as taking blood pressure medication, a recent study has found.

Sharma told Fox News Digital that when the device arrived, they decided to test it on him.


“He enthusiastically agreed and was overjoyed.”

In December 2023, a group of interventional cardiologists from Mount Sinai Fuster Heart Hospital in New York City successfully conducted the inaugural Symplicity™ blood pressure procedure. (Mount Sinai Fuster Heart Hospital)

Here’s how it works

According to Sharma, the treatment involves using a device to remove the overstimulated sympathetic nerves near the kidneys.

Controlling the patient’s blood pressure for a minimum of five years has the potential to prevent life-threatening events like heart attacks, strokes, brain bleeds, and kidney failure.

“Renal denervation continues to be an experimental therapy that has shown some promise as a proof of concept.”

As of the end of December 2023, the FDA has granted approval to two devices for this treatment: Medtronic’s Symplicity Spyral Renal Denervation system and Recor Medical’s Paradise Ultrasound Renal Denervation system.

The FDA has approved the device to help lower blood pressure in patients with hypertension who are not able to sufficiently control their blood pressure through lifestyle changes and antihypertensive medications.

High blood pressure is a global concern that can lead to serious health complications such as death, stroke, and heart attack. It is often referred to as a “silent killer” because it typically has no noticeable symptoms. However, the consequences of uncontrolled high blood pressure can be devastating.

To prevent the negative impacts of high blood pressure, it is important to take proactive steps. Adopting a healthy lifestyle that includes regular exercise, a balanced diet, and stress management techniques can significantly reduce the risk of developing high blood pressure. It is also essential to avoid smoking and excessive alcohol consumption, as these habits can worsen the condition.

Regular monitoring of blood pressure levels is crucial to detect any abnormalities early on. This can be done through regular check-ups with a healthcare professional or by using a home blood pressure monitor. If high blood pressure is diagnosed, it is important to follow the prescribed treatment plan, which may include medication, lifestyle changes, and regular monitoring.

It is worth noting that high blood pressure affects people of all ages and backgrounds. Therefore, awareness and education about the condition are vital. By understanding the risks and taking preventive measures, individuals can reduce their chances of experiencing the severe consequences associated with high blood pressure.

In conclusion, high blood pressure is a serious health concern worldwide that can lead to death, stroke, and heart attack. However, by adopting a healthy lifestyle, monitoring blood pressure levels, and seeking appropriate medical care, individuals can effectively manage and prevent the negative impacts of this silent killer.

According to Sharma, the procedure is specifically designed for individuals who do not exhibit any blockage in their kidney arteries.

Interventional cardiologists perform a one-hour procedure in which they insert a thin tube into the renal artery. Through this tube, sound waves or radiofrequency energy are delivered to specifically target and ablate the overactive sympathetic nerves connected to the kidney, as explained by Sharma to Fox News Digital.

The patient’s blood pressure has significantly improved after the procedure, with an average reading of 135/85. This is the lowest it has been in many years. Mount Sinai Fuster Heart Hospital is proud to be one of the few hospitals in the country offering this groundbreaking procedure.

According to the doctor, the nerve endings are somewhat damaged during the process.

This helps to calm the excessive activity of the nerves, which in turn reduces blood pressure to the brain.

Research has demonstrated that this ablation technique is effective in reducing both systolic (the top number) and diastolic (the bottom number) blood pressure readings in individuals for extended periods, ranging from months to even years.

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According to Sharma, there is little to no harm to the kidneys.

Like any medical procedure, there are potential risks associated with it.

During the procedure, there is a potential risk of damaging an artery.

According to a doctor interviewed by Fox News Digital, hypertension is the most common risk factor for heart disease that can be modified. However, the control of blood pressure in our country is not at the desired level.

According to Sharma, damage can occur in approximately one out of every 500 cases.

While it is highly unlikely for this to occur, it is important to acknowledge that it is a potential complication.

Why results have been life-changing

On December 4th, Dr. Sharma and his team of doctors at Mount Sinai successfully carried out the procedure on a 44-year-old patient named Adit Dhawan.

In a conversation with Fox News Digital, Dhawan, a married father residing on Long Island, New York, shared his experience.

Skipping the salt in your diet can significantly reduce your risk of heart disease, according to a recent study. In fact, researchers found that by avoiding excessive salt intake, you could decrease your risk by nearly 20%. This study emphasizes the importance of being aware of what you’re consuming and making conscious choices to protect your heart health.

From the moment he was diagnosed with high blood pressure at the young age of 19, he had been prescribed various medications throughout the years. Unfortunately, none of these medications proved to be effective in treating his condition.

Dhawan maintained a healthy diet and engaged in regular exercise.

In his twenties, he informed Fox News Digital that despite his efforts, his blood pressure has consistently averaged 150/90-100 mm Hg.

Medical experts state that a normal blood pressure reading falls within the range of 110-120/70-80 mm Hg.

A normal blood pressure reading, as stated by medical experts, falls within the range of 110-120/70-80 mm Hg. (Tobias Hase/picture alliance via Getty Images)

A few months ago, when Dhawan measured at home, he found that the result was even higher than what he usually observed.

“I freaked out when I saw how high it was – 170/100,” he exclaimed.

When Dhawan approached Sharman for assistance, the doctor informed him about the innovative procedure, sparking his enthusiasm to give it a shot.

A recent study suggests that consuming just one alcoholic drink per day could potentially lead to an increase in blood pressure levels. The study highlights the potential negative impact of even moderate alcohol consumption on cardiovascular health.

After the procedure, Dhawan mentioned that he found it to be “not bad” and only experienced some mild soreness afterwards. He took Tylenol to alleviate the discomfort, which lasted for approximately three days.

Just three weeks after the procedure, Dhawan is already experiencing the positive effects. He has significantly reduced his reliance on blood pressure medications and has resumed running and exercising, as he shared with Fox News Digital.

“I’m incredibly relieved because high blood pressure can be a dangerous condition that often goes unnoticed,” he expressed. “I feel overjoyed. My overall health is excellent, and all my vital signs are in perfect condition.”

According to a doctor’s observation, the procedure appears to offer a modest reduction in blood pressure based on trials and short-term follow-up.

Dhawan’s blood pressure has significantly improved, now averaging 135/85, which is the lowest it has been in several years.

Mount Sinai, along with a few other hospitals across the country, has successfully performed a groundbreaking procedure as of Dec. 2023. Notable medical institutions that have also carried out this procedure include NewYork-Presbyterian/Columbia University, Gates Vascular Institute in Buffalo, New York, Smidt Heart Institute at Cedars-Sinai in Los Angeles, and Cleveland Clinic in Cleveland, Ohio.

What doctors are saying

Fox News Digital reached out to several physicians who were not involved with Dhawan’s case to gather their insights on the innovative treatment for uncontrolled hypertension.

Dr. Manesh R. Patel, M.D., the chief of cardiology and co-director of the Duke Heart Center at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, stated that the renal denervation procedure has demonstrated its effectiveness in improving blood pressure control. He highlighted that this procedure is particularly beneficial for patients with difficult-to-control blood pressure and those who are taking one or two medications to manage their high blood pressure.

Medical research suggests that excessive cellphone use, specifically spending a certain amount of time chatting on the phone per week, can increase the risk of high blood pressure.

According to Patel, he is thrilled about the availability of another treatment option for patients with high blood pressure.

According to a doctor interviewed by Fox News Digital, hypertension is the most common modifiable risk factor for heart disease, and there is still room for improvement when it comes to blood pressure control in our country.

“Having a procedure to support control, in addition to medications, is a crucial advancement.”

Medtronic’s Symplicity Spyral Renal Denervation system and Recor Medical’s Paradise Ultrasound Renal Denervation system both obtained FDA approval for this therapy by the end of December 2023. (AP Images)

According to Patel, when questioned about potential concerns regarding the impact of the procedure on the kidneys, he stated that the renal denervation procedure has been well-tolerated in studies conducted so far, with a low risk of causing any damage.

Dr. Steven Potter, M.D., a highly skilled kidney and pancreas transplant surgeon at Medstar Georgetown Transplant Institute in Washington, D.C., shared his thoughts on the recently approved procedure.

Potter, in an interview with Fox News Digital, emphasized the significant economic burden caused by hypertension on a global scale. He also highlighted the potential value that can be derived from exploring innovative treatment options for this condition.

Renal denervation, at this stage, remains an experimental therapy that has demonstrated some potential as a proof of concept.

According to Potter, based on trials and short-term follow-up, it appears that the procedure offers a modest reduction in blood pressure. However, he also pointed out that the results of studies have been conflicting, with some showing significant benefits while others did not.

Hypertension is characterized by having a systolic blood pressure that exceeds 130 mm Hg or a diastolic blood pressure that exceeds 80 mm Hg. (iStock)

According to the expert, further investigation into the procedure is required in order to determine its suitable role in clinical practice.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), almost half of adults in the United States are affected by high blood pressure. Shockingly, only one out of every four individuals with hypertension is able to successfully control it.

Hypertension is characterized by a systolic blood pressure higher than 130 mm Hg or a diastolic blood pressure higher than 80 mm Hg.

Hypertension claimed the lives of 691,095 people in the United States in 2021, either as a primary cause or as a contributing factor.

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