High blood pressure is called the silent killer because people who have it often do not feel sick.
Now, doctors at the Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center are testing a new treatment that could revolutionize care.
Like millions of Americans, Teresa Osborne of Springfield has high blood pressure.
It runs in her family, and doctors have struggled to get her blood pressure under control.
Her battle with blood pressure began with birth of her son 23 years ago.
“Ever since then, it's been nothing but up and down, up and down, up and down,” she said. "Every time I went to the doctor, they would change my pills, try something different. And I've tried about everything that's on the market."
Ernest Mazzaferri, an interventional cardiologist, said that it is critical to lower high blood pressure.
"The long term effects of high blood pressure can be highly devastating. Risk of strike, congestive heart failure, kidney failure, and people don't know that it's happening to them, so it's really a terrible disease," he said.
Mazzaferri is one of a group of doctors across the country trying a new technique.
It is a clinical trial to see if surgery might help.
Doctors insert a little tube into the arteries that go to the kidneys, then burn the nerves in the kidneys.
The surgery is supposed to lower high blood pressure since kidneys play a role in regulating it. Some patients will get the burn, some won't, so researchers can determine if it works.
Osborne said that she did not know which version of the treatment she received, but she said that she is ready for some relief.
“If it works, it may give people an option who otherwise may not have had an option,” Mazzaferri said.
The doctor said that it would be a year or two before the nationwide study is finished and researchers know if this might be a new way to treat uncontrolled high blood pressure.
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