Studies performed by an Italian doctor found there to be a connection between CCSVI in MS patients and the occurrence of MS. Dr Zamboni’s studies showed CCSVI in Multiple Sclerosis patients can be treated and provide people with MS relief from symptoms. In the study performed, 65 patients underwent an operation to alleviate CCSVI and 73 percent of this group no longer had MS symptoms after 2 years.
CCSVI stands for ‘chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency’. This condition causes blood in both the brain and spine to be unable to make it back to the heart. If the oxygen-depleted blood is left in the central nervous system, this condition can reach a chronic level.
To diagnose CCSVI an ultrasound is taken of the veins in various parts of the head and neck. With the help of the specialized extracranial and transcranial Doppler sonography, a set of 5 criteria are used. Only 2 of the 5 criteria must be present for the patient to be diagnosed with CCSVI. Upon studying the high resolution image produced by the ultrasound, doctors are looking for signs of narrowing or deformity in the main veins of the central nervous system. Any sign showing blood flow through these veins has been reduced often points to CCSVI. The reduction of blood flow could also be caused by an obstruction of some sort.
To obtain an accurate diagnosis of CCSVI, a couple of factors are needed to be taken into consideration. These factors are; the types of narrowing seen in veins and the technology and training used to detect these constrictions.
Patients experiencing MS symptoms are often referred to a neurologist. The study of CCSVI has caused some patients to seek the aid of a vascular surgeon instead of a neurologist, in order to check for CCSVI.
Treatment for CCSVI
Currently, treatment is offered very few places for CCSVI in Multiple Sclerosis patients. The CCSVI Foundation is a nonprofit MS patient advocacy organization. This group assists patients in being diagnosed for CCSVI and seeks treatment for it.
The common procedure offered involves inflating a balloon inside the affected vein or veins. Another option is to insert stents in narrow or deformed veins. This procedure is used to improve blood flow out of the brain and to the heart. This form of treatment for CCSVI in MS patients has yet to be approved, but it is out there. It still isn’t 100 percent clear as to whether or not CCSVI in Multiple Sclerosis patients is connected, but each study performed does appear to be leaning towards the affirmative.
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