The MS Cure Part II: proponents and opponents of CCSVI



Last week, I discussed about CCSVI, short for chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency, the new theory of Italian doctor Paolo Zamboni that many people say is the revolutionary MS cure we have been waiting for. But before we get caught up in the hype, let us see and hear what health experts have to say.

The hopefuls

Bianca Weinstock-Guttman, an associate professor of neurology at the State University of New York at Buffalo

“If this is proven correct, it will be a very, very big discovery because we’ll completely change the way we think about MS, and how we’ll treat it.”

According to Yves Savoie, MS Society of Canada

“As President and CEO of the MS Society, I am aware of the tremendous interest across Canada and around the world caused by the recent news coverage of the CCSVI study. Indeed I share your excitement and hope in the preliminary findings of this study. I also celebrate and respect the integrity of our research funding programs which will continue to ensure that the very best projects are selected and supported.”

Dr Robert Zivadinov, stuy leader of the CCSVI study at Buffalo University in New York:

“If we can prove the hypothesis that CCSVI is the underlying cause of MS, then it is going to change the face of how we understand the disease.”

MRI expert Dr. Mark Haacke co-organized a workshop on CCSVI in February. He is encouraging patients to send him neck and head images for research.

Patients need to speak up and say they want something like this investigated … to see if there’s credence to the theory.”

The skeptics

The major MS societies are of course skeptical

Initially, the MS Society of Canada was quoted as saying

“Many questions remain about how and when this phenomenon might play a role in nervous system damage seen in MS, and at the present time there is insufficient evidence to suggest that this phenomenon is the cause of MS.”

Dr Susan Kohlhaas of the UK MS Society stated

“Several medical advisers to the MS Society have read through the papers published by Dr Zamboni, and have heard him lecture on the subject. They are not convinced by the evidence that blockages to draining veins  from the brain are specific to people with MS, or that this explains the cause of MS at any stage of the condition.”

Dr. Doug Brown, biomedical researcher working with the MS Society UK stated in a TV interview:

“…an intriguing, interesting avenue of research…[but]…at the moment there is a current lack of evidence to back up the claims being made…a lot of more research is needed.”

Dr. Paul O’Connor, a neurologist at Toronto’s St. Michael’s Hospital is openly critical.

“There is not a shred of real evidence anywhere that messing around with these veins does anything to help MS patients. If there is no treatment for this condition, there is no need to detect it.”

The next part of this series will tackle the treatment itself.

The MS Society of Canada is organizing a webcast on CCSVI on April 7. Speakers include Yves Savoie, President & CEO, MS Society, Dr. Jock Murray, Founding Director Dalhousie MS Clinic, and Karen Torrie-Racine, person with MS. Register now!

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  1. Really enjoyed this post.Thanks Again. Will read on…

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