Renovascular hypertension is the most prevalent form of surgically remediable hypertension. With appropriate selection of operative candidates, a high rate of cure or improvement may be anticipated. Favorable results justify revascularization in hypertensive patients with focal arteriosclerotic renal artery disease. The absence of advanced arteriosclerosis provides the most valid basis for predicting long-term survival following revascularization. Patients with clinically demonstrable diffuse arteriosclerotic disease are preferably treated medically; we consider them candidates for surgery only if drug therapy cannot control blood pressure. Renal revascularization does not appear to alter the inexorable progression of concomitant generalized arteriosclerosis. Revascularization rather than nephrectomy is the primary surgical therapy for renal artery stenosis in properly selected patients.