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How BAROSTIM THERAPY™ is Designed to work

The mechanism of action

The human body has its own mechanisms for sensing changes in blood pressure and other blood flow changes. This natural system is largely located in the brain, as well as the walls of the carotid arteries, which are the vessels in the neck that supply blood to the brain. Pressure sensors, called baroreceptors, are found on the carotid artery and in the carotid sinus. These sensors measure and report blood flow to the brain, which compares it to the body's needs.

BAROSTIM THERAPY™ is a neuromodulation therapy that activates the baroreceptors, which triggers the body's main cardiovascular reflex, to regulate blood pressure. 1,2

By activating the baroreceptors in the wall of the carotid artery, BAROSTIM NEO™ is able to stimulate the afferent and efferent pathways of the autonomic nervous system. The brain responds by modulating efferent pathways, which relaxes the blood vessels, slows the heart rate and reduces fluid in the body. These actions reduce the afterload on the heart by decreasing arterial resistance, which can improve the heart's ability to pump blood to the tissues. The increase in parasympathetic tone and decrease in sympathetic drive results in the restoration of autonomic balance, which reduces excessive blood pressure and improves cardiac structure and function.

BAROSTIM THERAPY™ is the only treatment with the potential to reduce sympathetic activity while restoring parasympathetic activity. 3

1. Korner PI. Essential hypertension and its causes: neural and nonneural mechanisms. Oxford: Oxford University Press; 2007. 2. Gronda E et al. Baroreflex Activation Therapy: A New Approach to the Management of Advanced Heart Failure with Reduced Ejection Fraction. 2016; (under submission). 3. BAROSTIM NEO™ system reference guide. Available here – Last accessed March 2016

Demonstrated mechanism of action

BAROSTIM THERAPY™ is designed to reduce muscle sympathetic nerve activity. Muscle sympathetic nerve activity (MSNA) falls and rises in tandem with blood pressure as BAROSTIM THERAPY™ is turned ON and OFF.5

MSNA after chronic therapy in a 68-year old female:

MSNA after chronic therapy in a 68-year old female

BAROSTIM THERAPY™ is designed to increase parasympathetic activity and decrease sympathetic activity. Chronic baroreceptor stimulation causes sustained changes in heart rate variability and heart rate turbulence that are consistent with inhibition of sympathetic activity and increase of parasympathetic activity in patients with drug-resistant systemic hypertension.


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