High blood pressure treatment device ‘promising’

A device the size of a paper clip inserted in the groin has shown promising results in lowering blood pressure, scientists say. In a study of 83 patients, published in The Lancet, those who received the device experienced an immediate reduction in blood pressure. But one-third also developed swelling in their leg which needed treatment.
Experts say the device could be a new way of controlling blood pressure, particularly in hard-to-treat cases. High blood pressure affects one in three adults in the UK, with around 5% of this group suffering from resistant hypertension, which does not respond to medication.
High blood pressure is dangerous because it causes strain on the vessels carrying blood around the body. This can cause vessels to become clogged up or to weaken, which can cause damage to the heart or brain. High blood pressure also increases the risk of stroke, heart attack, heart failure, kidney damage and eye problems.
The device, called a coupler, made by ROX Medical in California which also funded the study, creates a chamber between the artery and vein in the upper thigh which appears to help lower resistance and bring blood pressure down.