STLMoms: Medical Breakthroughs

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(KTVI) - The medical world is forever changing and that means cures can be on the horizon. We are taking a look at four medical breakthroughs that could impact so many lives.

Dr. Gayathri Raman with the St. Louis Medical Clinic talked about them.

HALTING HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE

Researchers have found that some radio frequencies will disable certain nerves in kidneys to significantly lower blood pressure. The treatment involves threading a catheter through an artery in the groin, but doesn't require major surgery

HELP FOR THE HEART

There have been great strides in the use of metal stents to open clogged arteries and in repairing or replacing defective valves. Soon such procedures will become less invasive.

HOPE FOR DIABETICS

Look for an external artificial pancreas to hit the U.S. market within five years.

The device monitors blood sugar and then administers and adjusts insulin automatically using a computerized insulin pump. One early version, which stops the flow of insulin when glucose levels are too high is already available overseas and will begin US trials this year.

HELPING THE BLIND SEE

An artificial retina is being developed by Second Sight Medical Products Inc. The technology, called Argus II, converts images from a tiny camera in a person's glasses into small electrical pulses transmitted to electrodes that are implanted on the retina. Vision is limited, but testing has enabled sightless people to find doors, sidestep obstacles and sort laundry.

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