A new surgical technique may be useful in treating high blood pres- sure (BP) when it does not respond to treatment, claims H Geiger of the J W Goethe University of Frankfurt, Germany. In the technique called ventrolateral medullary decompres- sion, a Teflon implant is used to reduce pressure on the two nerves located near the brain stem known as medulla oblongata. In seven out of eight patients treated, the tech- nique lowered BP enough for the patients to reduce medication. It is too early to recommend such surgery because elevated BP can be due to a number of factors, said Geiger (The Lancet, Vol 352, No 9126).
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