Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a disorder characterized by damage to the myelin sheath insulation of nerve cells of the brain and spinal cord affecting nerve impulses which can lead to numerous physical and cognitive disabilities. The disease, which affects over 500,000 people in the United States alone, is widely believed to be an autoimmune condition potentially triggered by an antecedant event such as a viral infection, environmental factors, a genetic defect or a combination of each. Chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency (CCSVI) is a condition characterized by abnormal venous drainage from the central nervous system that has been theorized to have a possible role in the pathogenesis and symptomatology of MS (1). A significant amount of attention has been given to this theory as a possible explanation for the etiology of symptoms related to MS patients suffering from this disease. The work of Dr. Zamboni, et al, who reported that treating the venous stenoses causing CCSVI with angioplasty resulting in significant improvement in the symptoms and quality of life of patients with MS (2) has led to further interest in this theory and potential treatment. The article presented describes endovascular techniques employed to diagnose and treat patients with MS and CCSVI.
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