Renal artery angioplasty is a procedure to widen the opening of the renal arteries that supply blood to the kidney. Narrowing of the renal artery (renal artery stenosis) is the leading cause of this artery obstruction. Renal artery stenosis is mostly caused by atherosclerosis or fibrous disease of the arteries. When the renal artery is blocked, the blood flow to the kidney is affected. Angioplasty aims at opening the block and restoring the regular blood flow. The kidney manages the amount of salt and fluid in the body by filtering the blood. When the blood fails to enter the kidney to remove salt and water, there is the retention of fluid in the body. Moreover, the kidney releases the hormone renin that helps retain salt and water, and causes the blood vessels to stiffen. Stiffening of the blood vessels results in building up of pressure, leading to renovascular hypertension.
Why do I need renal artery angioplasty?
You may need renal artery angioplasty if you have the following conditions:
- Sudden onset of renovascular hypertension
- Renovascular hypertension without a positive family history
- Renovascular hypertension without a medical history of factors known to cause hypertension
- Renovascular hypertension unmanageable with drugs
- Noncompliant to the medications
- Kidney failure
- A decline in kidney function
- Unmanageable renovascular hypertension
- Congestive heart failure
- Unstable angina (a condition where your heart doesn’t get enough blood flow and oxygen)
- The recent development of end-stage kidney disease
How will I know if I need renal artery stenting?
The physician may order certain tests to identify whether you require renal angioplasty. Some of them include:
- Angiography: This test uses a catheter to identify the site of obstruction in the renal artery.
- Magnetic resonance angiography: Similar to magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), magnetic resonance angiography uses a large magnet to create images of the kidney.
- Computed tomography angiography: This test uses a series of cross-sectional X-rays to build a three-dimensional image of the kidney.
- Duplex Doppler ultrasonography: This test uses sound waves to measure the size of the stenosis within the renal arteries.
How is renal artery angioplasty done?
During renal artery angioplasty, the physician may follow the below procedure:
- The physician makes an incision in the groin through which a catheter is inserted.
- The physician guides the catheter carefully to the narrow part of the renal artery.
- Next, the physician places a guidewire with a balloon on its tip through the catheter to the spot in the block in the artery.
- The physician inflates the balloon to open the blockage.
- Finally, the physician presses a stent into the artery wall.
- The physician leaves the stent in the artery to keep it open to maintain the blood flow.
What are the risks of renal artery angioplasty?
As with any other procedure, there are few risks associated with renal artery angioplasty:
Health Solutions From Our Sponsors
Top What Is Renal Artery Angioplasty? Related Articles
Congestive Heart Failure (CHF)Congestive heart failure (CHF) refers to a condition in which the heart loses the ability to function properly. Heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, myocarditis, and cardiomyopathies are just a few potential causes of congestive heart failure. Signs and symptoms of congestive heart failure may include fatigue, breathlessness, palpitations, angina, and edema. Physical examination, patient history, blood tests, and imaging tests are used to diagnose congestive heart failure. Treatment of heart failure consists of lifestyle modification and taking medications to decrease fluid in the body and ease the strain on the heart. The prognosis of a patient with congestive heart failure depends on the stage of the heart failure and the overall condition of the individual.
Hemodialysis (Treatment for Kidney Failure)The most common method used to treat advanced and permanent kidney failure is hemodialysis. Hemodialysis allows your blood to flow through a special filter that removes extra fluids and waste products. Most patients have treatments three times a week. Tests to measure treatment success are performed about once a month. Anemia, erythropoietin, renal osteodystrophy, itching, sleep disorders, and amyloidosis are all complications from dialysis. A proper diet can help improve dialysis and daily health.
High Blood Pressure (Hypertension)
High blood pressure (hypertension) is a disease in which pressure within the arteries of the body is elevated. About 75 million people in the US have hypertension (1 in 3 adults), and only half of them are able to manage it. Many people do not know that they have high blood pressure because it often has no has no warning signs or symptoms.
Systolic and diastolic are the two readings in which blood pressure is measured. The American College of Cardiology released new guidelines for high blood pressure in 2017. The guidelines now state that blood normal blood pressure is 120/80 mmHg. If either one of those numbers is higher, you have high blood pressure.
The American Academy of Cardiology defines high blood pressure slightly differently. The AAC considers 130/80 mm Hg. or greater (either number) stage 1 hypertension. Stage 2 hypertension is considered 140/90 mm Hg. or greater.
If you have high blood pressure you are at risk of developing life threatening diseases like stroke and heart attack.
REFERENCE: CDC. High Blood Pressure. Updated: Nov 13, 2017.
High Blood Pressure & BodyHigh blood pressure puts you at risk for a number of other conditions. Here's what to look out for.
High Blood PressureWhat causes high blood pressure (hypertension)? Know the warning signs and symptoms of high blood pressure. Read about high blood pressure medications, diet, and long term treatments.
HBP QuizTake this quiz and test your IQ of high blood pressure (hypertension), the cardiovascular disease that causes most strokes and heart attacks. How are dizziness, snoring, and gout related to HBP? Find the answer and learn how medical treatments and lifestyle adjustments fight this common problem.
Hypertension PictureHigh blood pressure, defined as a repeatedly elevated blood pressure exceeding 140 over 90 mmHg -- a systolic pressure above 140 with a diastolic pressure above 90. See a picture of Hypertension and learn more about the health topic.
15 Surprising Things That Raise Your Blood PressureSalt, worry, and anger aren't the only things that can raise your blood pressure. Risk factors like loneliness and birth control may also affect blood pressure. See what else can bump your numbers up.
Hypertensive Kidney DiseaseHigh blood pressure can damage the kidneys and is one of the leading causes of kidney failure (end-stage renal kidney disease). Kidney damage, like hypertension, can be unnoticeable and detected only through medical tests. If you have kidney disease, you should control your blood pressure. Other treatment options include prescription medications.
Kidney (Renal) Failure
Kidney failure can occur from an acute event or a chronic condition or disease. Prerenal kidney failure is caused by blood loss, dehydration, or medication. Some of the renal causes of kidney failure include sepsis, medications, rhabdomyolysis, multiple myeloma, and acute glomerulonephritis.
Post renal causes of kidney failure include bladder obstruction, prostate problems, tumors, or kidney stones.Treatment options included diet, medications, or dialysis.
Portal HypertensionPortal hypertension is most commonly caused by cirrhosis, a disease that results from scarring of the liver. Other causes of portal hypertension include blood clots in the portal vein, blockages of the veins that carry the blood from the liver to the heart, and a parasitic infection called schistosomiasis. Symptoms of portal hypertension include varices (enlarged veins), vomiting blood, blood in the stool, black and tarry stool, ascites (abnormal fluid collection within the peritoneum, the sac that contains the intestines within the abdominal cavity), confusion and lethargy, splenomegaly or enlargement of the spleen, and decreased white blood cell counts.
Preeclampsia (Pregnancy Induced Hypertension)Preeclampsia is related to increased blood pressure and protein in the mother's urine. Preeclampsia typically begins after the 20th week of pregnancy. When preeclampsia causes seizures, it is termed "eclampsia" and is the second leading cause of maternal death of in the US. Preeclampsia is the leading cause of fetal complications. Risk factors for preeclampsia include high blood pressure, obesity, multiple births, and women with preexisting medical conditions such as diabetes, kidney disease, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, or scleroderma. Pregnancy planning and lifestyle changes may reduce the risk of preeclampsia during pregnancy.
Pseudotumor Cerebri (Idiopathic Intracranial Hypertension)Pseudotumor Cerebri (intracranial hypertension) is a condition where there is an increase in pressure of fluid surrounding the brain and spinal cord (cerebrospinal fluid or CSF) mimicing a brain tumor. The cause is unknown. The most common symptom is headache but also include eye-pain, vision loss and double vision. Pseudotumor cerebri is diagnosed with MRI or CAT scans and treated by discontinuing offending medications (if applicable), weight loss and diuretic medications. The condition can also be helped by repeated drainage of spinal fluid using the lumbar puncture.
Pulmonary HypertensionPulmonary hypertension is elevated pressure in the pulmonary arteries that carry blood from the lungs to the heart. The most common symptoms are fatigue and difficulty breathing. If the condition goes undiagnosed, more severe symptoms may occur. As pulmonary hypertension worsens, some people with the condition have difficulty performing any activities that require physical exertion. While there is no cure for pulmonary hypertension, it can be managed and treated with medications and supplemental oxygen to increase blood oxygen levels.
What Causes Congestive Heart Failure?Congestive heart failure is a chronic disease that progresses with time if left untreated. Heart failure can occur due to diseases of the heart, the blood vessels supplying oxygen and nutrients to the heart, or sometimes from factors outside the heart (extracardiac causes). With proper management, people who have congestive heart failure can lead nearly normal lives, depending on the severity of the condition.