What is MS or what is Multiple Sclerosis?
This question is often one of the first questions that is asked, after someone is newly diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis.
Currently, Multiple Sclerosis or MS is still classified as an autoimmune disorder, where the body becomes confused and attacks itself, as if it is a foreign invader, that it needs to protect itself from.
Multiple Sclerosis is known for attacking the nervous system, especially the spinal cord and/or the brain, which often results in scarring that interferes with the nerves being able to function as they should.
But there was a recent breakthrough discovery announced towards the end of 2009, where Dr. Paolo Zamboni of Ferrara, Italy announced his findings of 2 year study that was conducted with 120 MS patients in Ferraro, Italy.
Dr. Paolo Zamboni, a vascular surgeon, conducted a study, in conjunction with a neurologist, where 120 MS patients were evaluated and found to have at least partial blockages to the veins, which drain the blood away from away from the brain.
Dr. Zamboni's results and conclusions from the study brought up the idea that MS may include a problem with a blockage to the blood flow away from the brain, through partially blocked veins in the neck (jugular veins) or addition veins near the shoulder blades and arm pit regions, which help to drain the blood away from the veins on the side of the neck.
Dr. Paolo Zamboni found that the majority of patients in the 2 year study had blockages of veins in the neck (one or both of the jugular veins, as well as veins that help the jugular veins to drain), which restricted blood flow from leaving the brain as it should.
This resulted in high iron levels in the brains of most of the MS patients and could possibly be contributing to the symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis, which the patients were experiencing.
Dr. Zamboni developed a surgical procedure he called chronic cerebral venous insufficiency or CCSVI, where a thin a catheter was inserted in the blocked veins and after the restriction was removed, the majority of the MS patients that under went the surgical procedure showed improvement.
Other studies have been done in the USA and a few other countries around the world to try to duplicate what Dr. Zamboni did with the patients in his study, but a much lower percentage of patients in the USA were shown to have the blockages. Not all of the MS patients, who underwent the same type of procedure as the patients in Dr. Zamboni's study, showed such remarkable improvements or results at such a high percentage., as the MS patients did, who were in Dr. Paolo Zamboni's study group.
In spite of all of the skepticism that resulted after further studies were performed in the USA and in other countries, which had mixed results that were not easy to draw good conclusions from, the CCSVI surgery seems to have many of the patients, who were found to have the restricted blood flow, who underwent the surgery, similar to the procedure that Dr. Zamboni developed for MS patients, have experienced some improvements in their MS symptoms from removing the restriction to the blood flow leaving the brain.
When it comes down to the studies that were done on MS patients in the USA and the other studies that were done in other countries around the world there are 2 things that should be noted about all of this.
First of all, the overall medical community has not fully accepted Dr. Zamboni's findings or conclusions, based on the results of the MS patients that were in the 2 year study that was conducted in Ferrara, Italy.
Especially when it comes to the majority of doctors in the USA. This breakthrough in MS research hasn't changed the definition as to what medical doctors overall are defining the answer to the question "What is MS?"
Medical doctors, generally in the USA, think of Dr. Zamboni's findings as being very speculative, at best and not proven by rigorous medical standards of double blind placebo studies and the like.
Secondly, the results and conclusions, which Dr. Zamboni received with the study that he participated in with 120 MS patients had an very high percentage of MS patients who had the blockages to blood flow present and had the CCSVI procedure done,
were not able to be duplicated with similar results for the same kind of percentage results of the number MS patients that were found to have the blockages, compared to those who did not have the blockages and with the same or similar percentages of the number of MS patients that under went the procedure that had positive results from having the CCSVI procedure done that helped to reduce their MS symptoms and
But there are doctors scattered about in the USA, who will at least work with you to help evaluate you to help you to find out if you do have the blockages that Dr. Zamboni found in the majority of the patients of the 120 MS patients, that were in the Ferraro, Italy study.
After keeping up on the continuing developments of Dr. Zamboni's continuing work, I think that the blockages that he found in MS patients are at least a consideration for each of us, diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis, depending on our symptoms of Ms.
Since I was having big problems with passing out or fainting spells, my doctors thought that it was a good idea for me to be evaluated, since this could have been a potential explanation for me passing out so frequently over a period of more than 2 years.
But it was found, after running ultra sound tests, that I didn't appear to have any of the type of blockages that Dr. Zamboni saw in the study he was involved in.
So it still stands, when you ask a doctor "What is MS", that the prevailing theory still is that Multiple Sclerosis is an autoimmune disorder, which appears to be even more of a mystery to doctors across the board.
Multiple Sclerosis attacks the nerves through out the nervous system, as well as the membranes that line certain parts of the body, like the membrane called the Blood Brain Barrier, which surrounds and protects the brain.
MS is known for attacking and causing damage to the spinal cord and/or the brain.
Scarring can result from the MS attacks and depending where the scarring ends up being, this can cause a whole list of symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis.
To learn more, click on the link -- what is MS ?
If you found this information to be helpful, or if you would like to leave any comments, we would be happy to hear what you think.