Meta-analysis of the correlation between chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency and multiple sclerosis

Vasc Endovascular Surg. 2013 Nov;47(8):620-4. doi: 10.1177/1538574413503562. Epub 2013 Sep 4.


Purpose: To determine whether a correlation exists between chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency (CCSVI) and multiple sclerosis (MS).

Materials and methods: A meta-analysis of the current literature was performed to evaluate the frequency of CCSVI, diagnosed by echo color Doppler criteria, in patients with MS and in normal controls.

Results: In all, 19 studies were identified from January 2005 through February 2013; however, 3 studies were excluded due to duplicate data and 3 additional studies because 0 patients fulfilled CCSVI criteria in both MS and control groups. In order to improve homogeneity, 4 outlier studies were also removed from the analysis. Analysis of the remaining 9 studies demonstrated a significant correlation between CCSVI and MS (odds ratio 1.885, P < .0001) with no significant heterogeneity of the studies (I (2) = 18, P = .279).

Conclusions: The meta-analysis demonstrated a correlation between CCSVI and MS. However, there was no evidence that CCSVI has a causative role in MS.

Keywords: central nervous system; chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency; color Doppler; multiple sclerosis.

Publication types

  • Meta-Analysis
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cerebral Veins / physiopathology*
  • Chronic Disease
  • Humans
  • Multiple Sclerosis / diagnosis
  • Multiple Sclerosis / epidemiology*
  • Multiple Sclerosis / physiopathology
  • Odds Ratio
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Prevalence
  • Risk Assessment
  • Risk Factors
  • Spinal Cord / blood supply*
  • Ultrasonography, Doppler, Color
  • Venous Insufficiency / diagnosis
  • Venous Insufficiency / epidemiology*
  • Venous Insufficiency / physiopathology