Unlocking healthier future: Renal Denervation makes waves as new hypertension treatment | Global News

Unlocking healthier future: Renal Denervation makes waves as new hypertension treatment

/ 10:42 AM February 08, 2024

Are you struggling to keep your blood pressure in check despite medications and lifestyle changes? Turning off some kidney nerves might just be for you. 

At a recent medical consensus forum titled ‘Renal Denervation: A Blood Pressure Procedure,’ top hypertension specialists and interventionalists spotlight a new and promising approach for managing difficult-to-treat high blood pressure. The event was organized by the Philippine Society of Hypertension and the Philippine Heart Association, with support from Medtronic.

Over the years, hypertension continues to be a health crisis in the Philippines. It is estimated that nearly every family is touched by high blood pressure in some way. Based on recent studies, 7 out of 10 older Filipinos are living with high blood pressure. 

With a high salt diet, coupled with a sedentary lifestyle, excess weight, and inadequate primary prevention care, hypertension has remained challenging to control for many Filipinos – a problem compounded by low health literacy on maintaining healthy blood pressure.

Alarmingly, about 20-35% of patients have resistant hypertension-meaning their BP remains uncontrolled despite taking three or more blood pressure pills. 

“Hypertension is a silent killer here in the Philippines, leading to strokes, kidney failure, heart attacks. Unfortunately, some patients do not respond well to treatments even with multiple medications,” said Dr. Dolores Bonzon, President of the Philippine Society of Hypertension.

Renal Denervation hypertension blood pressure

Hypertension experts, nephrologists, cardiologists and interventionalists from leading medical institutions convene for the first Philippine consensus forum on Renal Denervation as an innovative treatment approach for difficult-to-control high blood pressure. The forum marks an important milestone in evaluating the potential for this therapy amid rising rates of resistant hypertension across the country.

The future of hypertension treatment

Luckily, this might not be the case anymore. Now, an innovative blood pressure-lowering therapy called Renal Denervation (RDN) is making waves in medical communities worldwide, offering new hope for millions of people struggling to control their blood pressure.

Designed for patients who do not respond well to conventional treatments, this 1 hour minimally invasive procedure uses radiofrequency energy to disable nerves surrounding the arteries to the kidneys that send signals to increase blood pressure. Disrupting these nerves helps relax the blood vessels, leading to a lasting decrease in blood pressure within 48 hours after the RDN procedure.

“We’ve seen remarkable and long-term blood pressure reductions in patients treated with Renal Denervation. Many also felt improvement in their outlook and quality of life.” Said Dr. Jhoanna Marcelo, an Interventional Cardiologist from the Philippine Heart Center who has successfully performed multiple RDN procedures herself.  

Renal Denervation hypertension blood pressure

In focus: Dr. Jhoanna Marcelo shares her expertise in conducting renal denervation procedure and it’s impact on patients with other comorbidities like chronic kidney diseases.

This novel approach to controlling high blood pressure expands choices beyond just pills and diet and exercise for patients with lifetime maintenance medications for hypertension.

“With better blood pressure despite less medication, patients were able to exercise without fear of blood pressure spikes and fewer risks for strokes.”

Is it safe? Is it good for you?

Thanks to the recent development of a consensus statement and guidelines for using Renal Denervation in the Philippines, more medical doctors now have a solid framework for offering this innovative treatment to suitable patients. 

“The procedure is proven safe based on studies. Early patient cases locally have already shown remarkable results, too. Most importantly, the guidelines clearly describe which patients can benefit most from getting this treatment.” Said Dr. Raymond Oliva, a Hypertension Specialist at Philippine General Hospital and one of the authors of the Consensus Statement for Renal Denervation Treatment. 

Renal Denervation is recommended for the following patients:

  • Uncontrolled blood pressure
  • Unwilling or unable to adhere to medication due to side effects or intolerance
  • Higher risks for stroke, diabetes, heart failure, and other cardiovascular diseases
  • Willing to undergo RDN

Currently, Renal Denervation procedure is available in the following institutions in the country: Philippine Heart Center, St. Luke’s Medical Center, Cardinal Santos Medical Center, Manila Doctors Hospital, ManilaMed Medical Center Manila, Asian Hospital and Medical Center, and Cebu Doctors University Hospital.

Renal Denervation hypertension blood pressure

Representatives from Philippine Society of Hypertension and the Philippine Heart Association, professional medical societies, and leading hospitals unite to advance a comprehensive dialogue for the first time about the potential role of renal denervation in managing hypertension.

Start a conversation today. You have nothing to lose and potential years to gain. To learn more about how Renal Denervation can help reduce blood pressure, discuss your options with your physician or cardiologist.


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