Focused Ultrasound Therapy
Focused ultrasound is a rapidly evolving, noninvasive, therapeutic technology with the potential to improve the quality of life and decrease the cost of care for patients with hypertension. This novel technology focuses beams of ultrasonic energy precisely and accurately on renal nerves without damaging surrounding normal tissue.
How it Works
Where the beams converge, the ultrasound produces precise ablation (thermal destruction) of the nerves which cause hypertension. Much of this work has been in renal nerves, but other nerves have also been studied.
The primary options for treatment of hypertension include medication, but many have side effects which limit therapy effectiveness.
For certain patients, focused ultrasound could provide a noninvasive and potentially more effective alternative to current medical management. Focused ultrasound is noninvasive, so it may be able to help lower blood pressure without the side effects of medication. It can also be repeated, if necessary.
A clinical trial in China is using focused ultrasound to treat the perirenal adipose tissue to reduce essential hypertension.
Regulatory Approval and Reimbursement
Focused ultrasound treatment for hypertension has the CE Mark in Europe. It has not been approved by the FDA and is not covered by medical insurance companies in the US.
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