Welcome! This blog contains research & information on lifestyle, nutrition and health for those with MS, as well as continuing information on the understanding of the endothelium and heart-brain connection. This blog is informative only--all medical decisions should be discussed with your own physicians.

The posts are searchable---simply type in your topic of interest in the search box at the top left.

Almost all of MS research is initiated and funded by pharmaceutical companies. This maintains the EAE mouse model and the auto-immune paradigm of MS, and continues the 20 billion dollar a year MS treatment industry. But as we learn more about slowed blood flow, gray matter atrophy, and environmental links to MS progression and disability--all things the current drugs do not address--we're discovering more about how to help those with MS.

To learn how this journey began, read my first post from August, 2009. Be well! Joan

Friday, April 9, 2010

CCSVI Facts--

April 9, 2010 at 2:21pm

1. Dr. Paolo Zamboni found a new medical condition when he noted that MS patients have stenotic veins draining the brain and spine. Through his blinded research, he found a condition he called Chronic Cerebrospinal Venous Insufficiency. It was new technology--doppler ultrasound--that showed him the blood was refluxing and slowed in MS patients brains. Although the connection of MS to the venous system has been made for over 100 years, Dr. Zamboni was the first to see a direct correlation. Many doctors around the world have now confirmed what he saw.

2. We know about Chronic Venous Insufficiency in other parts of the body. This is a recognized condition. Vascular doctors have studied this and treated it with angioplasty for many years. Surprisingly, the jugular and azygos veins had never been studied in depth before. Vascular doctors have studied the veins draining the legs, kidneys, liver and heart, yet not the brain. This is why CCSVI is new; however treating veins is not new. When veins do not work, there is harm to the organ they are supposed to drain.

3. The autoimmune theory for MS is a theory. It has never been proven. Dr. Thomas Rivers created EAE in the 1930s, when he discovered that he could mimic the demyelinating lesions seen in the MS brain. He created these CNS lesions by injecting rhesus monkeys brains with rabbit brain extract. He called this experimental allergic encephalomyelitis--EAE. (now the "a" is for autoimmune.)

We have never- in all of these years of research-- found out exactly why the immune system is activated in MS. Dr. Zamboni's research provides a very plausible reason: slowed venous drainage and reflux causes a break in the blood brain barrier which leads to deposition of foreign particles (including iron) which activates the immune system. He undeerstands this, because this is exactly what happens in venous stasis ulcers formed on the legs in Chronic Venous Disease.

4. People do not like new ideas, especially when they counter the status quo.

5. Doctors do not like patients reading on the internet and telling them what to do.

6. Time is brain...this expression is used for stroke treatment, but is applicable for MS, as well.

7. If MS is re-categorized as a venous disease with neurological complications, many people who make their living treating MS will be affected--researchers, professors, doctors, pharmaceutical reps and CEOS, nurses, and neurologists. Not all of them are happy about this. Many want this to just "go away."

8. Vascular doctors understand the importance of venous return....but not all want to or are able to treat CCSVI.

9. A knowledgeable, informed patient or caregiver is an asset to any doctor. But see #5. We need to read the research and understand the facts. 
Speak softly and carry a large stack of research papers. 

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