Renal Artery Disease Treatments

Renal artery stenosis is the narrowing of one or both renal arteries. “Renal” means “kidney” and “stenosis” means “narrowing.” The renal arteries are blood vessels that carry blood to the kidneys from the aorta—the main blood vessel that carries blood from the heart to arteries throughout the body.

Illustration of renal artery disease showing plaque build up in arteries.
Image source: National Institutes of Health

Treatment options for diseases of arteries supplying blood to the intestines and kidneys include open surgical (bypass) and endovascular treatment (angioplasty and stents).

Open vascular surgery

A bypass graft using a blood vessel from another part of the body or a tube made of synthetic material is placed in the area of the blocked or narrowed artery to reroute the blood flow.

Endovascular procedures

Such as angioplasty (the opening of a renal artery using a balloon or other method) or placement of a stent (a tiny expandable metal coil placed inside an artery to keep the artery open).

Risk factors for renal artery disease:

  • high blood cholesterol levels
  • high blood pressure
  • smoking
  • insulin resistance
  • diabetes
  • being overweight or obese
  • lack of physical activity
  • a diet high in fat, cholesterol, sodium, and sugar
  • being a man older than 45 or a woman older than 55
  • a family history of early heart disease

Content adapted from the National Institutes of Health.