A method for treating congestive heart failure (CHF) has been developed that restores kidney renal functions by artificial vasodilation of at least one kidney. A vasodilator drug is locally delivered to the kidney via a kidney perfusion catheter. The drug can be mixed with the patient's blood, saline or other suitable solvent and the mixture directly applied to the kidney through the catheter. The restoration of kidney function assists the heart by removing excess fluid, urine and toxin from the patient, and by normalizing the patient's renin-angiotensin system and other neurohormonal substances. The method is applicable to treat chronic and acute CHF.