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New blood pressure treatment being tested

ABC 30 out of Fresno, Calif., reports on a clinical trial for a new blood pressure treatment called Renal Denervation.

The proposed treatment would target overactive renal nerves, which can cause blood pressure to skyrocket. Renal nerves transmit information from the kidneys to the brain. In Renal Denervation, doctors insert a needle into an artery in the groin near the kidneys and burn the nerves.

The ABC 30 story quotes a doctor who says the process would represent the first significant change in high blood pressure treatment in 100 years.

Some existing blood pressure treatments have raised concerns in the medical community. For example, two clinical drug trials have prompted a U.S. Food and Drug Administration investigation into whether a blood pressure drug called Benicar increases the risk of heart-related deaths.

A recent Mayo Clinic report has also linked Benicar to stomach problems including chronic diarrhea, vomiting, intestinal inflammation and weight loss.

The story says risks — including infections and blood clots – are very rare with Renal Denervation, and doctors believe it may get U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval within a few years.

Significantly, Renal Denervation appears to be most effective in people with “resistant high blood pressure,” which doesn’t respond well to medication.

You should consult with a doctor if you have any ongoing symptoms or health concerns, and before making any changes in medication. You should also consult with a lawyer if you have injuries connected with Benicar.

See the story here:

http://abclocal.go.com/kfsn/story?section=news/health&id=9021979