Chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency (CCSVI) and multiple sclerosis (MS): a critical review.

Servizio di Neurologia, Neurocentro della Svizzera Italiana, Ospedale Regionale di Lugano, Switzerland.
CNS & neurological disorders drug targets (Impact Factor: 2.63). 08/2011; 10(6):757-61. DOI: 10.2174/187152711797247786
Source: PubMed


Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a chronic disease of the central nervous system with not yet completely understood pathogenesis. The so called "chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency (CCSVI) theory" has recently emerged, supporting the concept of a cerebrospinal venous drainage impairment as the cause of MS. Since the first publication on this topic with a claimed 100% specificity and sensitivity of the condition for MS diagnosis, CCSVI theory has generated a scientific and mass media debate with a great hope for the miracle of a new possible endovascular treatment of MS ("liberation procedure"). We critically summarize the available evidence on CCSVI discussing inconsistent and incomplete replication of the original results by different groups, methodological limitations and potential therapeutic implications. We conclude that the available data are insufficient to establish conclusively a clear relationship between MS and CCSVI and do not support the role of CCSVI as the primary cause of MS. Until credible scientific evidence replicates the original results, any proposed invasive treatments of CCSVI should be discouraged.

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    ABSTRACT: Objective: The purpose of this study is to report the 30-day morbidity and mortality associated with the endovascular diagnosis and management of chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency. Materials and methods: The medical records of 95 consecutive patients (60 women and 35 men) with a mean age of 48 years (age range, 25-66 years) who underwent diagnostic endovascular evaluation and intervention for chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency between June 2010 and September 2011 were reviewed retrospectively. All patients had a diagnosis of multiple sclerosis by McDonald criteria. Endovascular evaluation of the internal jugular and azygos veins was performed with digital subtraction venography and intravascular ultrasound. Indications for percutaneous transluminal angioplasty (PTA) were venographic findings of a greater than 50% diameter stenosis, the presence of reflux on digital subtraction venography, greater than 50% cross-sectional area stenosis by intravascular ultra-sound, or a finding of abnormal thick valves or webs by either method. The primary endpoint of this study was the 30-day mortality, and the secondary endpoint was the presence of major complications. Results are presented as means and percentages. Results: A total of 107 procedures were performed in 95 patients. Endovascular evaluation showed venous lesions requiring intervention in 90 of 95 patients (94.7%) and was negative in five of 95 patients (5.3%). A total of 193 venous lesions were treated; angioplasty was technically successful in 188 of 193 (97.4%) lesions. Internal jugular vein thrombosis after PTA was identified in three of 95 (3.2%) of the treated patients. Bleeding at the puncture site not requiring transfusion occurred in four of 95 patients (4.2%). There were no reported procedure-related deaths. Conclusion: The results of the current study suggest that endovascular evaluation and management of chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency is safe, with low morbidity and no procedure-related mortality.
    American Journal of Roentgenology 06/2013; 200(6):1358-1364. DOI:10.2214/AJR.12.8938 · 2.73 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Objective: This study is the first in a series investigating the relationship between autonomic nervous system dysfunction and chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency in multiple sclerosis patients. We screened patients for the combined presence of the narrowing of the internal jugular veins and symptoms of autonomic nervous system dysfunction (fatigue, cognitive dysfunction, sleeping disorders, headache, thermal intolerance, bowel/bladder dysfunction) and determined systolic and diastolic blood pressure responses to balloon angioplasty. Methods: The criteria for eligibility for balloon angioplasty intervention included ≥ 50% narrowing in one or both internal jugular veins, as determined by the magnetic resonance venography, and ≥ 3 clinical symptoms of autonomic nervous system dysfunction. Blood pressure was measured at baseline and post-balloon angioplasty. Results: Among patients who were screened, 91% were identified as having internal jugular veins narrowing (with obstructing lesions) combined with the presence of three or more symptoms of autonomic nervous system dysfunction. Balloon angioplasty reduced the average systolic and diastolic blood pressure. However, blood pressure categorization showed a biphasic response to balloon angioplasty. The procedure increased blood pressure in multiple sclerosis patients who presented with baseline blood pressure within lower limits of normal ranges (systolic ≤ 105 mmHg, diastolic ≤ 70 mmHg) but decreased blood pressure in patients with baseline blood pressure above normal ranges (systolic ≥ 130 mmHg, diastolic ≥ 80 mmHg). In addition, gender differences in baseline blood pressure subcategories were observed. Discussion: The coexistence of internal jugular veins narrowing and symptoms of autonomic nervous system dysfunction suggests that the two phenomena may be related. Balloon angioplasty corrects blood pressure deviation in multiple sclerosis patients undergoing internal jugular vein dilation. Further studies should investigate the association between blood pressure deviation and internal jugular veins narrowing, and whether blood pressure normalization affects Patient's clinical outcomes.
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