Percutaneous renal sympathetic denervation: 2013 and beyond.
Can J Cardiol. 2014 Jan;30(1):64-74
Authors: Froeschl M, Hadziomerovic A, Ruzicka M
Systemic hypertension affects almost a quarter of Canadian adults. Although most can achieve adequate blood pressure control using a combination of medical and lifestyle interventions, many have resistant hypertension and are unable to reach their target. Percutaneous renal sympathetic denervation has been developed to address a crucial mechanism in the pathophysiology of hypertension: renal sympathetic overactivity. In 2009, the first-in-man experience with renal denervation was published. Several studies followed, including the randomized Symplicity HTN-2 trial of 106 patients: 6-month mean blood pressure reduction was 32/12 mm Hg in those who underwent renal denervation, vs a change of +1/0 Hg in those who did not. However, all the evidence to date suffers from the same drawbacks: studies are small, and follow-up is short and largely incomplete. The future of renal denervation will be determined by 3 factors. First, there will be more and better evidence. Symplicity HTN-3 has randomized 530 patients to renal denervation vs a sham procedure; 24-hour ambulatory blood pressure monitoring will be assessed in all participants. Other quality trials will follow, including ones that will assess clinical end points. Second, other indications for this treatment will be investigated. Sympathetic overactivity is implicated in many other conditions, including heart failure and arrhythmia; sympathetic denervation might benefit these patients as well. Third, myriad devices, using different methods to achieve renal denervation, are being developed. The first renal denervation system was approved for clinical use in Canada in March 2012. Until more data are available, patients undergoing this procedure should be carefully screened and, ideally, enrolled in research protocols.
PMID: 24365191 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]