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Is CCSVI treatment, a cure for Multiple Sclerosis?!

Updated on July 4, 2010

CCSVI treatment and cure for Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is a neuro-immunological disorder where one’s immune system gets mis-directional to attack its own central nervous system. About 2.5 million people worldwide are affected with MS. With no known cause or cure for this auto-immune disease, suddenly there is a lot of buzz of new hope with which the sufferers could say bye-bye to MS and live a normal life! This new ‘Liberation Treatment’ is based on the concept of Chronic Cerebrospinal Venous Insufficiency (CCSVI).

The common symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis range from blurred vision, diplopia, optic neuritis, nystagmus, slurred speech, gait problem, bowel or urinary incontinence, fatigue, pain, tremors and spasticity. The widely known concept for MS till date was that the immune system attacks myelin sheath (nerves coating) and can cause temporary or permanent damage based upon the scope of remyelination. For the same theory, the only option was immuno-suppressive drugs such as interferons (Avonex, Beta-Interferon and Rebif) or a non-interferon Copaxone (glatiramer acetate) which other than huge expense are known to cause severe side effects. On the radar are also the oral pills such as Cladribine, Fingolimod, Laquinimod etc. in Phase II or III trials. Paolo Zamboni, an Italian doctor and professor at the University of Ferrara has made a breakthrough showing a new concept and a possible cure through Liberation Treatment.

Dr. Zamboni, also a vascular surgeon started his research about a decade ago when his 40 something wife was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. His research study showed 100% of MS patients (65 people) having narrowing of veins (stenosis) of the neck region that flush blood from the brain. Dr. Paolo found high levels of iron deposits in the brain region due to dysfunction of these veins, and excess iron is bad as it release free radicals that cause cell death. He attributes severity of Multiple Sclerosis symptoms to more number of blocked veins which also include jugular (bring deoxygenated blood back from head to heart) and azygous (brings deoxygenated blood from thorax and abdomen) veins. It is said that the slower travel of deoxygenated blood may possibly cause a reflux back into brain and spine causing hypoxia in the brain. Also, this may allow iron and immune cells from blood stream to cross the blood-brain-barrier (BBB) and flow into the CSF (Cerebro-spinal fluid). The immune cells thus attack myelin. Raised level of antibodies in the CSF (spinal tap) is one of the key diagnoses for Multiple Sclerosis. Why the veins are narrowed, is not very clear but it could be congenital.

Dr. Zamboni named this condition as Chronic Cerebrospinal Venous Insufficiency (CCSVI) and came with a simple procedure. Angiography reveals blockage in the veins. The widening of these veins is done through angioplasty (a procedure similar to coronary balloon treatment) known as liberation treatment. There is a lot of optimism among MS sufferers while some skepticism co-exists. But if a simple and not-so-expensive procedure can liberate the sufferers, Dr. Paolo’s theory would be recharging so many lives to make them live their fullest. Yet the MS Societies in USA recommend not going for the treatment until its effectiveness is confirmed.

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      artylove 6 years ago

      If it blockages of veins, can simple and proven techniques like yogic breathing be of help?

      http://www.kandmool.com/Multiple-Sclerosis/Finally...

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      artylove 6 years ago

      Steps before CCSVI Treatment

      1. Serum-Ferritin Test to check Iron overload.

      2. Angiography- It reveals blockage in the veins.

      http://www.kandmool.com/Multiple-Sclerosis/Finally...

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      derekdadey 6 years ago

      I had no idea it was this serious, Cyn. And only after reading this blog post have I totally understood exactly what MS is. Your magnificent writing – I knew you always had it in you – made reading easy and fun. I wish you nothing but the best on your exploit and am sure things will go famously. Until it happens, I’ll be thinking of you and sending you all the positive energy. Get screened in the US. Check out http://www.ccsviclinic.ca/ for more information. Call (404)461-9560 to schedule your pre- and post procedure screening today in Fargo, ND. You can also email them at apply@ccsviclinic.ca.

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      rebecawatson 6 years ago

      I was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis back in 1983. I can hardly walk now and it seems my condition worsens every day. When I first heard about the Liberation procedure and its results from a friend, I thought United States would be the first to conduct the trials. I could never imagine the corruption involved. I ended up applying for this simple procedure in Poland and waiting.. The other options were to get it done in India. After researching the internet extensively, I came across http://www.ccsviclinic.ca/ . They are screening for CCSVI in Fargo, ND and have very affordable packages for the Liberation procedure in India. I called (404)461-9560 and spoke to their nurse administrator Lisa whose priceless support made me realize that we are not alone in the fight against MS. They are screening within the US and Canada, their medical travel package includes flight arrangements and help with the visas, world class accommodation and meals within their hospitals, the liberation procedure, a stent if needed, medications necessary, a site-seeing tour, Pre-and post-procedure supervision, Full medical file including copies of charts, screens, CDs of Venograms, blood work, EKGs, etc. Post Procedure Screenings, follow-up and consultation with surgeons for the next 6 months and so many other provisions Lisa told me about, I can’t recall however you might be able to find out more on their site.. http://ccsviclinic.ca/?page_id=564 . They are providing all of this at just $13000 as compared to the other companies that charge something like $20000 just for the procedure. You may also contact Lisa by emailing her at apply@ccsviclinic.ca or calling her on (404)461-9560. I am getting liberated mid-October and I am so very thankful to everyone at CCSVI Clinic for making this happen!

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      jessica forester 6 years ago

      The CCSVI Liberation Treatment could be the cure but fact remains that the rate of re-occlusion is stuck at 50% and MS patients being treated in the European and Asian countries end up suffering as they did, 3 months ago. While Big Pharmaceutical Corporations and governments in the US and Canada are coming up with new ideas to stop any advancements to the CCSVI theory (Like the superbugs, etc.), millions continue to travel to countries like India and Poland to get this simple procedure and no valuable data is recorded to support the CCSVI theory. Unless we get our position strong enough to support the CCSVI Theory, we will never be able to beat the Pharma Corporations or start the treatment here and many will keep suffering and dying even after having the procedure done. I lost my elder brother last month because of a blood clot in his stent. He got liberated 5 months ago in Poland. We need to prove to the government that this works. Non-profit organizations like the CCSVI Clinic http://www.ccsviclinic.ca/ are tirelessly working to develop safer protocols with teams of world renowned surgeons even though they are feeling the negative pressure from you know who. This Atlanta based Organization has started Clinical Trials for CCSVI and we need to support these groups because they are our only hope to fight for the truth. Without the valuable data that they are collecting offshore, the procedures will not be allowed here, in our own countries.

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      CCSVI Clinic 6 years ago

      It is estimated that the failure rate of the “liberation therapy” may be 50% or higher, even through the most experienced and best-known surgeons in Poland and Albany, NY. As more and more people receive the therapy there is growing concern amongst patients that the procedure needs to include a post-procedure protocol that is more effective than simply releasing the patient from the hospital or clinic within hours or a day of the procedure.

      CCSVI Clinic Physicians have applied for an International Ethics Board study approval entitled: “PROSPECTIVE, OPEN-LABEL STUDY OF THE SAFETY, EFFICACY AND RE-STENOSIS RATES IN MS PATIENTS WITH CCSVI UNDERGOING ENDOVASCULAR TREATMENT WHO RECEIVE AN ENHANCED HOSPITAL AFTERCARE PROTOCOL. Important previous studies on non-MS patients who have had the same venous angioplasty indicate that it’s critical to position and movement control patients post-procedure, monitor them for days afterward in the hospital with various imaging techniques, and re-treat if necessary. CCSVI Clinic is already sponsoring patients for this protocol with a 10-day stay in the hospital where patients will be imaged daily, post procedure. If there is evidence of re-occlusion, they will be taken back to the OR and re-treated. Past studies of non-MS patients with the same venous blockages have noted a cascade of failure points distally in venous vessels post angioplasty, and the hypothesis proposes that the study on MS patients will produce the same results. Once home, patients will be screened and interviewed at regular intervals by CCSVI Clinic Physician Researchers for several years after the treatment to study the changes and make comparisons between those who have followed the protocol and others who have had the procedure on an outpatient basis.

      It should be mentioned that our research is under much scrutiny and attack from elements that are trying to control the industry and the dialogue. A well-organized campaign to discredit CCSVI Clinic and our research is underway in the social media. We would ask you to have the independence of thought to see through their campaign of deceit.

      Regular research updates will be published on the CCSVI Clinic website http://www.ccsviclinic.ca/ . Questions about participation may be directed toward the CCSVI Clinic administration at 1-888-419-6855.

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      Greg Mills 6 years ago

      CCSVI Clinic Receives Joint IRB Approval for Aftercare Protocol Study.

      The joint application between Noble Hospital and CCSVI Clinic has been approved through the IEC Institutional Review Board (IRB) that will allow researchers to use patient data to study their new extended and enhanced aftercare treatment protocol. The study hypothesis states that in MS patients with CCSVI undergoing endovascular treatment, those receiving the enhanced hospital aftercare protocol will have an improved long-term outcome over those patients not receiving this same protocol. The study is a Prospective, Longitudinal, Cohort Study in which patients are given the enhanced hospital aftercare and post-procedure protocol and then followed at regular 3 month intervals post-procedure, with the same measurements including symptoms and clinical examination, EDSS scale, Quality of Life Scale (QOL) and Doppler U/S.

      Dr. Anand Alurkar, an Interventional Radiologist has done thousands of Intra and Extra cranial angio-procedures over the past 10 years. His previous studies may indicate that it’s critical to position and movement control patients who have had a venous angioplasty post-procedure, monitor them for days afterward with various imaging techniques, for other symptoms of restenosis, and re-treat if necessary. Previously unpublished data for patients who have had venous angioplasty may support a much lower restenosis rate (< 20%) in non-MS patients with the same neck vein blockages, (while conventional liberation treatments of MS patients who undergo the procedure are treated mostly as outpatients) have a restenosis rate of over 50% (at 400 days). Currently, this means that over half of all of the MS patients who get the liberation therapy can expect to be looking to get the procedure done again within a year or so, which would not be considered a successful outcome. This may also be the biggest hurdle to overcome in getting the liberation therapy approved in North America short of clinical trials. If the positive effects of the liberation procedure disappear in many patients after only a few months, it would be reasonable to assume they are placebo unless data is collected to show otherwise. Apart from confirming restenosis rates, the study will establish whether it’s just as important to observe a strict protocol after the procedure for a period of up to 10 days to prevent restenosis. Dr. Avneesh Gupte, an Interventional Neurosurgeon involved in the study says “If our daily Doppler Ultrasounds post-procedure come up with anomalies that indicate the beginnings of restenosis in the veins, we’ll take them back and do another balloon angioplasty where the occlusion is starting to occur. It should be no different for MS patients than the non-MS patients but the key is really that they be position controlled, movement controlled, and then monitored for 10 days afterwards to be sure”.

      Dr. Don Simonson, the Principal Investigator for the study agrees; “Of course there are other reasons that patients restenose, depending on the condition of their veins in the first place, and operator inexperience, so we have designed a study that isolates the aftercare protocol because we feel it may be at least as important, and in any case well worth studying.”

      CCSVI Clinic is already sponsoring patients for this protocol with a 10-day stay in the hospital where patients will be imaged daily, post procedure. If there is evidence of re-occlusion, they will be taken back to the OR and re-treated. To comply with the IRB approval, once home, patients will be examined and/or surveyed at regular intervals by a Principle Investigator (PI) for several years after the treatment to study the changes. Patients will have regular consults with the surgeon who performed their procedure as part of the protocol.

      More and more MS patients are reporting initial success (including vascular and some neurological differences) as a result of the venous angioplasty (liberation therapy) but then regression to previous symptoms sometimes within weeks post-procedure. It is estimated that the failure rate of the “liberation therapy” may be 50% or higher, even through the most experienced and best-known surgeons. Consequently, there is increasing concern amongst patients that the liberation therapy hypothesis needs to include a post-procedure protocol that is more refined than simply releasing the patient from the hospital or clinic within hours or a day of the procedure. If the study hypothesis is correct, it means that there are many other considerations that indicate a post-procedure stabilization period, re-examination, and re-treatment if necessary.

      A recent intake of Canadian patients confirmed that they were most satisfied with the protocol. “I am convinced that CCSVI Clinic has been by far the best choice available”, says Nicole Magnan, speaking on behalf of her husband, Robert who underwent the therapy under the 10-day protocol. “And nobody in this world that can convince me otherwise. Robert came in here a broken man. He had no hope. His next step was the nursing home. Today he is walking with the aid of a walker and with consistent daily physiotherapy he will make more steps every day. Most importantly, we are hoping that the positive changes will be permanent and the doctors at CCSVI Clinic explained that. They are such special people that will remain in our hearts forever.”

      Regular research updates will be published on the CCSVI Clinic website. Questions may be directed toward the CCSVI Clinic administration at 1-888-419-6855. Persons wishing to participate in the study must agree to the informed consent process, qualify through an inclusionary and exclusionary process and agree to be followed for several years by the study research team. They must be prepared to travel to Noble Hospital in Pune, India, but all arrangements will be taken care of by staff associated with the study. Interested persons should ensure that applications are in as soon as possible since there are limitations on the funding for the study population. Please log on to http://ccsviclinic.ca/?p=830 for more information.

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      Leo Voisey 4 years ago

      Chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency (CCSVI), or the pathological restriction of venous vessel discharge from the CNS has been proposed by Zamboni, et al, as having a correlative relationship to Multiple Sclerosis. From a clinical perspective, it has been demonstrated that the narrowed jugular veins in an MS patient, once widened, do affect the presenting symptoms of MS and the overall health of the patient. It has also been noted that these same veins once treated, restenose after a time in the majority of cases. Why the veins restenose is speculative. One insight, developed through practical observation, suggests that there are gaps in the therapy protocol as it is currently practiced. In general, CCSVI therapy has focused on directly treating the venous system and the stenosed veins. Several other factors that would naturally affect vein recovery have received much less consideration. As to treatment for CCSVI, it should be noted that no meaningful aftercare protocol based on evidence has been considered by the main proponents of the ‘liberation’ therapy (neck venoplasty). In fact, in all of the clinics or hospitals examined for this study, patients weren’t required to stay in the clinical setting any longer than a few hours post-procedure in most cases. Even though it has been observed to be therapeutically useful by some of the main early practitioners of the ‘liberation’ therapy, follow-up, supportive care for recovering patients post-operatively has not seriously been considered to be part of the treatment protocol. To date, follow-up care has primarily centered on when vein re-imaging should be done post-venoplasty. The fact is, by that time, most patients have restenosed (or partially restenosed) and the follow-up Doppler testing is simply detecting restenosis and retrograde flow in veins that are very much deteriorated due to scarring left by the initial procedure. This article discusses a variable approach as to a combination of safe and effective interventional therapies that have been observed to result in enduring venous drainage of the CNS to offset the destructive effects of inflammation and neurodegeneration, and to regenerate disease damaged tissue.

      As stated, it has been observed that a number of presenting symptoms of MS almost completely vanish as soon as the jugulars are widened and the flows equalize in most MS patients. Where a small number of MS patients have received no immediate benefit from the ‘liberation’ procedure, flows in subject samples have been shown not to have equalized post-procedure in these patients and therefore even a very small retrograde blood flow back to the CNS can offset the therapeutic benefits. Furthermore once the obstructed veins are further examined for hemodynamic obstruction and widened at the point of occlusion in those patients to allow full drainage, the presenting symptoms of MS retreat. This noted observation along with the large number of MS patients who have CCSVI establish a clear association of vein disease with MS, although it is clearly not the disease ‘trigger’.

      MS as a General Disease Condition

      Since keeping the jugular and azygos veins fully open is the key to reducing MS symptoms, it is of paramount importance to know what other post-procedure factors would create enduring effect in the venous drainage flow. All therapeutic modalities and interventions that could potentially affect the successful outcome of the ‘liberation’ therapy need to be included in the context of the treatment to establish which combination of therapies support the best long-term outcomes. Our own studies have so far shown that additional stem cell transplantation therapy done in a particular sequence immediately following the venoplasty, has led to increased luminal diameter and improved patency rates in the jugular veins. Since new clinical evidence also suggests there may be more than one primary cause in MS, and the need to create a multifaceted approach to therapeutically targeting MS as a general disease condition, it may not be appropriate to apply only ONE strategy. Based on the new histopathological discoveries outlined above, any advanced approach to treating MS obviously concerns itself with the reduction of the damage to the CNS, and to restore nerve function caused by neurodegeneration so as to prevent or delay onset and subsequent disability. By correlation, vascular pathology is part of this syndrome and cannot be ignored in isolation. The synthesis of therapies has demonstrated that patients treated through this protocol recover with:

      increased and faster neurologic improvement,

      enhanced angiogenesis and

      less pathological regression of the blood vessels,

      better and longer-term patency rates,

      less adverse metabolic reaction,

      much less risk of catastrophic iatrogenic injury to the veins leading to

      less intraluminal scarring and

      less risk of second, third and fourth procedures to open veins

      Also, in this way, infused stem cells may work to heal ALL damage to the veins throughout the body, and may in fact serve to reduce or eliminate additional venous disorders and co-morbidities not yet fully associated with MS (May-Thurner Syndrome, among others).

      Observational and statistical evidence from case studies into the sequential combination therapy that includes both venoplasty and stem cell transplantation has confirmed five beneficially therapeutic effects for MS:

      1) Jugular Vein Dilation Otherwise Known as Liberation Therapy. The vein dilation or venoplasty therapy provides the appropriate drainage of the CNS that prevents a retrograde pressure exertion on the myelin sheath covering the CNS. Whatever triggers the autoimmune system to turn on in people predisposed to MS, this back-pressure needs to be resolved. In case after case, the typical symptoms of MS retreat in individuals where the veins are expanded and the flow pressures are equalized. Good case study observation and statistical analysis of disability scale quantifications for subject samples taken post-procedure eliminate the biases inherent in the system to permit this statement of confirmation. (Personal Note: Some of the conjecture that passed for ‘conclusions’ in the NL study are quite frankly fraught with inherent biases.)

      2) Keeping the Neck Veins Open Long-term. Since keeping the jugular and azygos veins fully open is the key to reducing MS symptoms, it is of paramount importance to know what other post-procedure factors create enduring effect in the venous flow. For example, there is now good clinical and observational evidence to support the fact that stem cells (transplanted intravenously at the time of the venoplasty) reduce swelling, thrombin buildup, clotting and subsequent permanent intraluminal damage leading to scar tissue. As to what has already been established through clinical trials and subsequent therapeutic practice, it has been found that even in patients with severely malformed or abnormal jugular vein structure, the intravenous introduction of Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) post-operatively has served to repair injury attributable to venoplastic damage and desquamation of the endothelial and subendothelial cells of the interior venous lumen (tunica intima). Peak velocity, time average velocity vein area, and flow quantification have been assessed by means of echo colour Doppler at periodic intervals post-venoplasty. Significant hemodynamic improvement has been recorded at the level of the veins in the neck post-venoplasty. Moreover, this additional stem cell transplantation therapy has led to increased luminal diameter and improved patency rates demonstrating that the introduction of stem cells post-operatively significantly modifies the hemodynamics of the jugular veins more effectively than venoplasty alone.

      3) Post Procedural Monitoring to Avoid Second and Third Procedures. Having followed up with patients who had restenosed (in the dilated jugular veins) within hours, days or weeks of their procedure, discontinuance of postoperative monitoring, or even the lack of access to medical care following surgery does not seem reasonable especially given that the site of the disease i

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      loseraspie 4 years ago

      A lot of people with MS have gotten better thanks to The Liberation Treatment. However. The Liberation Treatment by itself won't work. To fully cure MS one has to have a combination of The Liberation Treatment and Angioplastasy Stem Cell Therapy. The best way to prevent your MS from returning is with Vitamin D Supplements. Recent studies have shown that Vitamin D lowers your risk of getting MS.

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