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The Catalyst

MUSC is first site in U.S. in hypertension trial

Staff Report

MUSC is the only medical center in South Carolina and the first site in the country to randomize a patient in the Symplicity HTN-4 clinical trial intended to treat uncontrolled hypertension.

The trial investigates the efficacy and safety of the investigational Symplicity® renal denervation system in volunteers who have blood pressure between 140 and 160 mmHg and are unable to control their hypertension (high blood pressure) even when taking maximum tolerated doses of three or more blood pressure medications.

Dr. Thomas Todoran

“This investigational interventional treatment represents an innovative approach to treating the growing number of patients with uncontrolled hypertension in the U.S.,” said Thomas M. Todoran, M.D., Assistant Professor of Medicine, Director of Vascular Medicine at MUSC.

“Renal denervation, along with ongoing treatment with antihypertensive medications, has the potential to help patients achieve their target blood pressure levels.”

Hypertension is an especially dangerous chronic disease because of its association with increased cardiovascular risk, including stroke and heart attack, as well as heart failure and kidney disease.

Renal denervation is an investigational catheter-based procedure that deactivates the nerves that line the walls of the arteries leading to the kidneys. These nerves are part of the sympathetic nervous system, which is one of the ways the body regulates blood pressure.

In people with hypertension, the renal nerves are typically hyperactive, raising blood pressure and contributing to heart, kidney and blood vessel damage.

For more information regarding this clinical trial please visit

January 13, 2014

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