Renal denervation (RDN) is a minimally invasive, endovascular catheter based procedure using radiofrequency ablation aimed at treating resistant hypertension (high blood pressure).
By applying radiofrequency pulses to the renal arteries, the nerves in the vascular wall (adventitia layer) can be denuded of nerve endings. This causes reduction of renal sympathetic afferent and efferent activity and blood pressure can be decreased.
Early data from international clinical trials is promising demonstrating average blood pressure reduction of approximately 30 mmHg at three year follow up in patients with treatment-resistant hypertension. Since 2007 over 4000 patients have undergone catheter based renal denervation.
During this minimally invasive procedure, the interventionists uses a steerable catheter with a radio frequency (RF) energy electrode tip. The RF energy is delivered to a renal artery via standard femoral artery access. A series of 2-minute ablations are delivered along each renal artery to disrupt the nerves. The procedure does not involve a permanent implant.