Previous trials have demonstrated clinically significant and durable reductions in arterial pressure from baroreflex activation therapy (BAT), resulting from electrical stimulation of the carotid sinus using a novel implantable device. A second-generation system for delivering BAT, the Barostim neo™ system, has been designed to deliver BAT with a simpler device and implant procedure.
BAT, delivered with the advanced system, was evaluated in a single-arm, open-label study of patients with resistant hypertension, defined as resting systolic blood pressure (SBP) ≥140 mm Hg despite treatment with ≥3 medications, including ≥1 diuretic. Stable medical therapy was required for ≥4 weeks before establishing pretreatment baseline by averaging two SBP readings taken ≥24 hours apart.
Thirty patients enrolled from seven centers in Europe and Canada. From a baseline of 171.7 ± 20.2/99.5 ± 13.9 mm Hg, arterial pressure decreased by 26.0 ± 4.4/12.4 ± 2.5 mm Hg at 6 months. In a subset (n = 6) of patients with prior renal nerve ablation, arterial pressure decreased by 22.3 ± 9.8 mm Hg. Background medical therapy for hypertension was unchanged during follow-up. Three minor procedure-related complications occurred within 30 days of implant. All complications resolved without sequelae.
BAT delivered with the second-generation system significantly lowers blood pressure in resistant hypertension with stable, intensive background medical therapy, consistent with studies of the first-generation system for electrical activation of the baroreflex, and provides a safety profile comparable to a pacemaker.