Use of MR Venography for Characterization of the Extracranial Venous System in Patients with Multiple Sclerosis and Healthy Control Subjects

Department of Neurology, School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, Buffalo Neuroimaging Analysis Center, State University of New York, 100 High St, Buffalo, NY 14203, USA.
Radiology (Impact Factor: 6.87). 02/2011; 258(2):562-70. DOI: 10.1148/radiol.10101387
Source: PubMed


To investigate the differences in the extracranial venous system in patients with multiple sclerosis (MS) and healthy control (HC) subjects by using magnetic resonance (MR) venography.
This HIPAA-compliant, prospective study was approved by the local institutional review board, and all participants gave informed consent. Fifty-seven patients, 41 (72%) with relapsing-remitting MS and 16 (28%) with secondary-progressive MS, and 21 HC subjects were imaged with a 3-T MR unit by using two-dimensional (2D) time-of-flight (TOF) and three-dimensional (3D) time-resolved imaging of contrast kinetics (TRICKS) sequences. In addition, six MS patients and six HC subjects underwent two sequential MR venographic examinations during 1 week to test image-reimage reproducibility. The morphologic features of internal jugular vein flow were classified as absent, pinpoint, flattened, crescentic, or ellipsoidal flow. Only absent and pinpoint flow were considered abnormal. The flow of the vertebral veins was classified as absent or present. The prominence of collateral neck veins and venous asymmetries between the left and right sides were assessed. Differences among groups were tested with a two-tailed Mann-Whitney two-sample rank-sum test.
No significant differences in morphologic features of flow in the internal jugular veins and vertebral veins were found between MS patients and HC subjects in any of the examined MR venographic parameters. No differences in asymmetry or prominence were found between MS patients and HC subjects. There was modest agreement (κ = 0.67) between 2D TOF and 3D TRICKS sequences. Image-reimage reproducibility showed modest agreement (κ = 0.66) for 2D TOF and low agreement for 3D TRICKS (κ = 0.33).
No significant differences in the extracranial venous systems between MS patients and HC subjects were detected by using MR venography. Standardized guidelines are needed to define parameters for the presence of venous anomalies.

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    • "Besides these variations, the IJV shows physiological variation per side, the right IJV having a greater CSA in 68% in comparison to the left side [15], [16]. In our recent publicated study the median CSA measured at the level of the thyroid gland at both sides was found to be asymmetric (1.01±0.58 "
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    ABSTRACT: A new treatable venous disorder, chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency (CCSVI), has been proposed in patients with multiple sclerosis. The natural course of CCSVI has not been examined yet. This is crucial given the fact that surgical procedures are increasingly offered to MS patients to treat venous stenosis. To document the natural course of venous haemodynamics we performed extra- and transcranial echo colour Doppler (ECD) in 52 multiple sclerosis patients and 28 healthy controls (HC) and re-examined this group after a median period of 16 weeks. The reexamination was done being blinded to the initial findings and the patients did not undergo any intervention. The ECD examination at baseline showed CCSVI in 5 (9.6%) of the 52 multiple sclerosis patients and 0 HC (P = 0.26). At follow-up the diagnosis CCSVI could not be reconfirmed in 3 out of 5 patients at follow-up, while 2 new CCSVI-positive multiple sclerosis patients were detected. ECD examination shows a fluctuating natural course of the extracranial venous haemodynamics, which makes determination of CCSVI by ECD examination unreliable.
    PLoS ONE 11/2013; 8(11):e78166. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0078166 · 3.23 Impact Factor
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    • "In this study, we also assessed the presence and number of collateral veins, as previously described [22]. These included anterior and external jugular veins, facial veins, thyroid veins as well as deep cervical veins (Figure  2). "
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    ABSTRACT: There is no established noninvasive or invasive diagnostic imaging modality at present that can serve as a 'gold standard' or "benchmark" for the detection of the venous anomalies, indicative of chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency (CCSVI). We investigated teh sensitivity and specificity of 2 invasive vs. 2 noninvasive imaging techniques for the detection of extracranial venous anomalies in the internal jugular veins (IJVs) and azygos vein/vertebral veins (VVs) in patients with multiple sclerosis (MS). The data for this multimodal imaging comparison pilot study was collected in phase 2 of the "Prospective Randomized Endovascular therapy in Multiple Sclerosis" (PREMiSe) study using standardized imaging techniques. Thirty MS subjects were screened initially with Doppler sonography (DS), out of which 10 did not fulfill noninvasive screening procedure requirements on DS that consisted of >=2 venous hemodynamic extracranial criteria. Accordingly, 20 MS patients with relapsing MS were enrolled into the multimodal diagnostic imaging study. For magnetic resonance venography (MRV), IJVs abnormal findings were considered absent or pinpoint flow, whereas abnormal VVs flow was classified as absent. Abnormalities of the VVs were determined only using non-invasive testing. Catheter venography (CV) was considered abnormal when >=50% lumen restriction was detected, while intravascular ultrasound (IVUS) was considered abnormal when >=50% restriction of the lumen or intra-luminal defects or reduced pulsatility was found. Non-invasive and invasive imaging modality comparisons between left, right and total IJVs and between the VVs and azygos vein were performed. Because there is no reliable way of non-invasively assessing the azygos vein, the VVs abnormalities detected by the non-invasive testing were compared to the azygos abnormalities detected by the invasive testing. All image modalities were analyzed in a blinded manner by more than one viewer, upon which consensus was reached. The sensitivity and specificity were calculated using contingency tables denoting the presence or absence of vein-specific abnormality findings between all imaging modalities used individually as the benchmark. The sensitivity of CV + IVUS was 68.4% for the right and 90% for the left IJV and 85.7% for the azygos vein/VVs, compared to venous anomalies detected on DS. Compared to the venous anomalies detected on MRV, the sensitivity of CV + IVUS was 71.4% in right and 100% in left IJVs and 100% in the azygos vein/VVs; however, the specificity was 38.5%, 38.9% and 11.8%, respectively. The sensitivity between the two invasive imaging techniques, used as benchmarks, ranged from 72.7% for the right IJV to 90% for the azygos vein but the IVUS showed a higher rate of venous anomalies than the CV. There was excellent correspondence between identifying collateral veins on MRV and CV. Noninvasive DS screening for the detection of venous anomalies indicative of CCSVI may be a reliable approach for identifying patients eligible for further multimodal invasive imaging testing of the IJVs. However, the noninvasive screening methods were inadequate to depict the total amount of azygos vein/VVs anomalies identified with invasive testing. This pilot study, with limited sample size, shows that both a non-invasive and invasive multimodal imaging diagnostic approach should be recommended to depict a range of extracranial venous anomalies indicative of CCSVI. However, lack of invasive testing on the study subjects whose results were negative on the DS screening and of healthy controls, limits further generalizibility of our findings. In addition, the findings from the 2 invasive techniques confirmed the existence of severe extracranial venous anomalies that significantly impaired normal blood outflow from the brain in this group of MS patients.
    BMC Neurology 10/2013; 13(1):151. DOI:10.1186/1471-2377-13-151 · 2.04 Impact Factor
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    • "Another study also reported no differences between 21 MS patients and 20 controls in relation to IJVs outflow and aqueductal cerebrospinal fluid flow using phase-contrast sequences and contrast-enhanced MRV [37]. Zivadinov et al. found no difference in morphological flow characteristics between MS patients and controls [44]. However, Dolic et al. found that progressive MS patients showed more morphological anomalies than those in relapsing stages of the disease [31]. "
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    ABSTRACT: The extra-cranial venous system is complex and not well studied in comparison to the peripheral venous system. A newly proposed vascular condition, named chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency (CCSVI), described initially in patients with multiple sclerosis (MS) has triggered intense interest in better understanding of the role of extra-cranial venous anomalies and developmental variants. So far, there is no established diagnostic imaging modality, non-invasive or invasive, that can serve as the "gold standard" for detection of these venous anomalies. However, consensus guidelines and standardized imaging protocols are emerging. Most likely, a multimodal imaging approach will ultimately be the most comprehensive means for screening, diagnostic and monitoring purposes. Further research is needed to determine the spectrum of extra-cranial venous pathology and to compare the imaging findings with pathological examinations. The ability to define and reliably detect noninvasively these anomalies is an essential step toward establishing their incidence and prevalence. The role for these anomalies in causing significant hemodynamic consequences for the intra-cranial venous drainage in MS patients and other neurologic disorders, and in aging, remains unproven.
    BMC Medicine 06/2013; 11(1):155. DOI:10.1186/1741-7015-11-155 · 7.25 Impact Factor
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