Research: CCSVI monthly


I have been collecting CCSVI papers up to post every now and again post, rather than posting them as they appear. As every, we report without comments. Digest as you will, our take will change if evidence dictates that we change our view. It is interesting that the UK MS Society has got fed up dealing with a monoculture of facebook posts on this subject to the detriment of everything else….More next month……maybe

Lugli et al. The hypothesis of patho-physiological correlation between chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency and multiple sclerosis: rationale of treatment. Phlebology. 2012;27 Suppl 1:178-86.

BACKGROUND: The possible role of the venous system in the pathogenesis of chronic neurodegenerative diseases has been hypothesized for decades. Quite recently, the description of a venous condition defined as chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency (CCSVI) and its strong association with multiple sclerosis (MS) has brought back the attention of the scientific community to the hypothesis of an aetiological or concomitant role of an altered venous function in the occurrence of this pathology. CCSVI is identified by sonographic criteria, thus the indication for its possible treatment is based on ultrasound findings.

METHOD: We retrospectively examined 167 consecutive patients affected by clinically defined MS and CCSVI, identified by ultrasound assessment by the presence of at least two sonographic criteria. Ultrasonographic diagnosis of CCSVI was then integrated by venography and intravascular ultrasound examination (in 43 patients). Patients were all submitted to endovascular procedure (venoplasty).

RESULTS: In 37% of cases there was no correspondence between the preoperative ultrasound assessment and the venographic findings. In the event of incongruity between venography and sonography, the intravascular ultrasound examination investigation, when performed, confirmed ultrasound findings in 42% of cases and venography results in 58%. At one month in 12% of cases ultrasound assessment showed the persistence of altered flux. In 67% of cases patients reported subjective amelioration, regarding non-specific symptoms.

CONCLUSION: The pathophysiology of CCSVI is yet to be defined. The superior cava venous system is highly complex in terms of anatomy and possible anomalies, as well as its haemodynamic mechanisms. Further studies are required to define the parameters of diagnosis and treatment of CCSVI.

The methodology to detect CCSVI is inconsistent and venoplasty does not always alter this, but about 70% of people felt better after treatment. However if the methodology is not robust then it is not worth further studies, pants on pants is still pants.

BACKGROUND: We report the outcome of 67 patients after endovascular treatment of chronic cerebro-spinal venous insufficiency in patients with multiple sclerosis.

MATERIALS & METHODS: For evaluating outcome, patients were divided into three groups with respective outcome after three, six and twelve months. Assessment of outcome was done by a disease-specific quality-of-life score that reflects the physical health (physical health composite) and mental health (mental health composite) by a score.

RESULTS: Improvement in physical health composite was significant (P < 0.05) in the three- and six-month groups. Improvement in mental health composite was only significant (P < 0.05) in the three-month group.

CONCLUSION: In conclusion, we can state that the result of endovascular treatment seems to decay although the baseline is still higher than preoperative. To confirm this finding, this study needs to be reproduced in a larger patient population.

In this study there was apparent percieved benefit for just a few months and this was gone within six months to a year. Maybe this is a short-term plcebo effect? As ever do a larger study, but should be do it properly in the first place get and answer and move on.

Purpose: To study the blood flow through the internal jugular veins (IJVs) of the MS population.

Materials and Methods: Two hundred MS patients and 14 normal volunteers were evaluated with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) at 3T. Contrast-enhanced time-resolved 3D MR angiography and 2D time-of-flight imaging were performed to assess abnormalities in the extracranial vascular anatomy.

Based on this assessment, the MS population was divided into subgroups of non-stenotic (NST), cervical 1 stenotic (blockage) only (C1ST) and cervical 6 stenotic (C6ST) subjects. In this study, 2D phase contrast MR imaging was used to quantify blood flow through major veins and arteries in the neck and flow differences among the groups were analyzed.

Results: Of the 200 MS patients, 87 (43.5%) belonged to the NST group, 50 (25%) belonged to the C1ST group and 63 (31.5%) belonged to the C6ST group.

The total IJV flow normalized to the total arterial flow of the NST group was 75.12 ± 12.22 %. This was significantly higher than that of the C1ST group, 63.93 ± 16.08 % (p<0.0001), which in turn was significantly higher than that of the C6ST group, 52.13 ± 20.71 % (p = 0.001).

Seventy-nine percent of the stenotic groups had a normalized subdominant IJV flow of less than 20%, a combined IJV flow of less than 50% and/or a sub-dominant IJV flow vs. dominant IJV flow ratio of less than 1/3. Only 2% of the NST group had a combined IJV flow of less than 50%, compared to 35% of the stenotic groups.

Conclusion: Blood flow through the IJVs was reduced in the MS population with stenoses compared to those without.

If there is an apparent blockage the blood flow is reduced and no evidence of blockage was found in 45% MSers.

Zaniewski M, Kostecki J, Kuczmik W, Ziaja D, Opala G, Swiat M, Korzeniowski T, Majewski E, Urbanek T, Pawlicki K. Neck duplex Doppler ultrasound evaluation for assessing chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency in multiple sclerosis patients. Phlebology. 2012 Feb 22. [Epub ahead of print]

INTRODUCTION: Recent clinical studies have suggested a relationship between multiple sclerosis (MS) and the occurrence of pathological changes in the jugular, vertebral and azygous veins that result in abnormal blood outflow from the brain and the spinal cord. Together, these pathological changes have been designated chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency (CCSVI). The aim of the present study was to evaluate the usefulness of duplex Doppler ultrasound in the evaluation of central nervous system venous outflow disturbances in patients suffering from MS.

METHODS: We examined 181 patients with MS, diagnosed on the basis of the McDonald criteria, and 50 healthy volunteer controls. All patients underwent Doppler ultrasound examination of the internal jugular veins (IJV) and vertebral veins (VVs). The presence of outflow disturbances and morphological abnormalities were evaluated.

RESULTS: Pathological changes in the extracranial jugular veins were diagnosed in 148/181 MS patients (82%) and 7/50 control group volunteers (14%). The following abnormalities in the MS group were revealed: the presence of a reflux in the IJVs and/or VVs (54%), narrowing (54%), a complete block in the flow through the IJV (10%) and an abnormal postural control of the cerebral outflow route (25%). These particular pathologies were of statistical significance in the MS group compared with the control group. This study also revealed a correlation between the occurrence of inverted flow in patients in a sitting position and chronic progressive MS (P = 0.0033).

CONCLUSIONS :The examinations undertaken indicate a possible connection between MS and CCSVI. The widely accessible and highly sensitive and specific Doppler ultrasound test may be useful for revealing, and preliminary analysis of, CCSVI pathologies.

Data in support of CCSVI and MS.

Mancini M, Morra VB, Di Donato O, Maglio V, Lanzillo R, Liuzzi R, Salvatore E, Brunetti A, Iaccarino V, Salvatore M. Multiple sclerosis: cerebral circulation time.Radiology. 2012 ;262:947-55.

Purpose: To assess cerebral circulation times (CCTs) in patients with multiple sclerosis (MS) and control subjects by using contrast material-enhanced ultrasonography (US) to determine whether vascular abnormalities can be detected in this disease.

Materials and Methods: This study was approved by the local ethics committee, and informed consent was obtained from all subjects. One hundred three patients with MS and 42 control subjects underwent extracranial and transcranial venous echo-color Doppler ultrasonography (US) and contrast-enhanced US. CCT was defined as the difference in arrival time of the US contrast agent bolus between the carotid artery and the internal jugular vein. The presence of chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency (CCSVI) was defined according to previously reported criteria for the extracranial and transcranial US techniques. Nonparametric statistics, including the Mann-Whitney U test and the Kruskal-Wallis analysis of variance, were used to compare contrast-enhanced US parameters between groups.

Results: The longest and average CCTs were substantially prolonged in patients with MS compared with those in control subjects (median longest CCT in patients with MS, 6.47 seconds [range, 3.29-29.24 seconds]; that in control subjects, 5.54 seconds [range, 2.57-7.63 seconds]; P < .001; median average CCT in patients with MS, 5.76 seconds [range, 2.64-17.51 seconds]; that in control subjects, 5.01 seconds [range, 2.57-7.06 seconds]; P < .002). No correlation was found between CCTs and clinical parameters.

The prevalence of CCSVI was higher in patients with MS than in control subjects (77% vs 28%, P < .0001). CCT was not significantly different between patients with MS who had CCSVI and patients with MS who did not (P = .182).

Conclusion: These results suggest that contrast-enhanced US with CCT assessment may have a role in the evaluation of cerebral blood flow in patients with MS and that a vascular impairment could be associated with MS. The finding of a prolonged CCT at contrast-enhanced US does not result from outflow impairment.

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