Canada The Senate - Multiple Sclerosis Treatment

A forum to discuss Chronic Cerebrospinal Venous Insufficiency and its relationship to Multiple Sclerosis.

Canada The Senate - Multiple Sclerosis Treatment

Postby Gordon » Fri Apr 30, 2010 1:27 pm

Tuesday April 27 2010

The Senate - Multiple Sclerosis Treatment

Hon. W. David Angus:
Honourable senators, I wish to highlight and call attention to the anxiety that afflicts thousands of Canadians who suffer from multiple sclerosis, MS.

This is an urgent call for action by Canada's medical authorities to conduct the appropriate clinical trials without further delay to either validate or disprove a procedure now known as the "miracle cure," which is giving great hope to MS sufferers around the world.

Some 75,000 Canadians have been diagnosed with and suffer from this debilitating disease. Furthermore, Canada has the highest rate of MS cases in the world, at 240 cases per 100,000 Canadians. The Department of Health tells me that a rate of 30 cases per 100,000 is considered to be high.

Honourable senators, MS most often affects individuals between the age of 20 and 40. It strikes the nervous system and produces a range of symptoms, including chronic fatigue, vision impairment, numbness, diminishing mobility and coordination, and loss of balance. It is a slow, debilitating and tragic condition.

Dr. Paolo Zamboni, director of the Vascular Diseases Center at the University of Ferrara in Italy, developed this miracle cure. His procedure was formally disclosed to the international medical community last November.

Dr. Zamboni discovered that a significant percentage of MS patients have Chronic Cerebrospinal Venous Insufficiency, CCSVI. My information is that this means that blood does not efficiently drain from the brain or spinal cord due to a narrowing of the veins in the neck and along the spine. By remedying this condition through a procedure similar to angioplasty, Dr. Zamboni found that close to 80 per cent of his MS patients experienced much improvement and, in most cases, the progression of their MS symptoms halted.

Honourable senators, Dr. Zamboni's procedure is not yet recognized as an approved treatment for people with MS in Canada. It appears to be controversial and is the subject of debate among medical scientists — neuroscientists and the pharmaceutical industry on the one hand, and vascular surgeons and interventionist radiologists on the other. There does, however, seem to be agreement that the treatment of CCSVI can at least provide temporary relief and stop the progression of MS symptoms.

Honourable senators, Canada spends a total of $140 million a year in direct costs and another $811 million a year in indirect costs because of MS. Each patient requires some $40,000 worth of prescription drugs annually. I am informed that pharmaceutical companies in North America have annual revenues of $6.3 billion from MS medication. MS patients also require physiotherapy and medical long-term care, and a high percentage of them are unable to work.

Some doctors in Canada are performing the procedure in special cases. One respected surgeon, who spent time observing Dr. Zamboni's techniques in Italy, told me last week that he has performed the procedure on six patients, in each case with full success — under the radar, I may suggest.

This surgeon deplores the fact that MS sufferers have no access to the procedure in Canada. He deplores that MS sufferers are spending up to $4,000 a month on drugs that do not make them any better. He deplores that in many cases, when they can afford it, MS sufferers, in desperation, are going to countries such as Poland, India, Israel and Kuwait and paying up to $50,000 for the CCSVI procedure, which takes less than an hour to perform. To make matters worse, apparently due to the widespread publicity and apparent success of Dr. Zamboni's procedure —

Wednesday April 28 2010

The Senate - Multiple Sclerosis Treatment

Hon. W. David Angus:
Honourable senators, I wish to pick up where I left off yesterday when I drew the attention of this house to the current distressing dilemma facing Canadian multiple sclerosis sufferers.

I reached the point of mentioning that a number of Canadian MS sufferers with sufficient means are, in desperation, going abroad to countries such as Poland, India, Israel and Kuwait for treatment of their chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency, CCSVI, condition at great expense and inconvenience. To make matters worse, due largely to increased awareness about the remarkable success of Dr. Zamboni's testing and treatment, waiting lists at these foreign clinics are rapidly getting longer, such that today, in some cases, the waiting period exceeds nine months.

Dr. Zamboni has actively drawn attention to his testing techniques and the procedure he uses to treat CCSVI. He was in Toronto last week to speak to a major neuroscience conference. As a result, there has been considerable media interest recently in the subject in Canada. It is all very helpful to get the message out and to highlight the plight of Canadian MS sufferers.

CBC's "The National" carried a dramatic feature on the miracle cure two weeks ago. Reporter Kelly Crowe travelled to Poland with a film crew to record the Zamboni procedure being carried out on a Canadian MS patient with CCSVI. The patient had shelled out substantial amounts of money to travel to Poland for the relatively simple treatment that she could not obtain under Medicare in Canada.

CTV's Avis Favaro also did one or more pieces on the subject. The Globe and Mail and National Post have each published articles in recent days. I commend to all honourable senators the April 26 issue of Macleans, which contains an informative, detailed article entitled "The Miracle Cure" about the terrible dilemma it has created for Canadian and other MS patients.

I also refer honourable senators to the website that was established by a local group of MS sufferers. This group includes Ms. Rebecca Cooney who was diagnosed with MS at age 25. Now at the age of 42, Ms. Cooney has limited mobility, suffers from constant headaches and chronic fatigue. She was forced approximately four years ago to end her rewarding and productive business career.

Honourable senators, please join me in this urgent call for immediate funding and the organization of a controlled national clinical trial under the Canada Health Act to complement the excellent research already being conducted at McMaster University and elsewhere in Canada.

Canada's MS sufferers deserve relief from their frustrating dilemma without further delay. Given the high rate of MS in Canada and the excellent state of our medical sciences, I can think of no reason why Canada should not be at the leading edge of CCSVI testing, research and treatment. Honourable senators, the time to act is now. Such action will not only capitalize on an extraordinary national opportunity, but more importantly, it will demonstrate compassion for Canada's MS patients and comply with those high moral and ethical standards for which Canadian medical professionals have long been renowned.

Hon. W. David Angus: ... uage=E&M=M
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Postby cah » Fri Apr 30, 2010 1:43 pm

I know nothing about canadian legislation... what happens next? An acclamation or something?
"There is only one good, knowledge, and one evil, ignorance." Socrates
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Postby Johnson » Fri Apr 30, 2010 3:10 pm

cah wrote:I know nothing about canadian legislation... what happens next? An acclamation or something?

The Canadian Senate cannot introduce Bills that affect the Constitution, and cannot introduce Bills involving public money allocations, so unfortunately, cannot introduce a Bill to legislate that the Government pay for testing or treatment. Generally, the Senate is considered a "chamber of sober second thought". It is an un-elected body, so they don't really give too much of a hoot for the plebes. Perhaps Senator Angus has a Bill in mind, or perhaps it is just more circus - without bread or ale.

What is very good though, is that we have attention in the Upper House. Sadly, Parliament is embroiled in pissing matches, and scandals involving Cabinet Ministers, former MPs, "busty hookers", cocaine, violation of the Geneva Conventions on the treatment of prisoners of war, and the other, usual tawdry crap. Further, health care is a Provincial responsibility, and the federal government cannot (and dares not) involve itself.

My name is not really Johnson. MSed up since 1993
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Postby cah » Fri Apr 30, 2010 3:41 pm

Johnson wrote:S.N.A.F.U.

At least this explanation I perfectly understand! :) :?

Thank you!
"There is only one good, knowledge, and one evil, ignorance." Socrates
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Postby sonia52 » Fri Apr 30, 2010 6:20 pm

In our daily livese, health is a provincial responsibility, but the provincial governments cannot approve a treatment or a medicament that the federal government has not already approved. So, we have to put pression on the federal government. It's only when the federal government will approve CCSVI treatment that it will be worth to ask our provincial governments to do something for us. So, let's talk to our federal MP's.
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Postby Brainteaser » Fri Apr 30, 2010 10:16 pm

Hey Johnson - your Parliament sounds as conscientous as ours! Funny about that. But it was great that CCSVI was at least raised in your Senate.
I can see that your Senate might have about the same standing as ours and was referred to by one former PM as 'unrepresented swill'.

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Canadian senate ms treatment

Postby belsadie » Sat May 01, 2010 5:12 pm

At least your Canadian senator has the guts to be out there. Where are the US Congress members?????
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Postby Mathd » Sat May 01, 2010 5:43 pm

Each political system have some weakness

The british political system (that is used here in canada, and i think is used in australia too) is build to work with 2 political formations,
but here in canada, nothing is that simple:

we have
1.The Liberal party, that have been seen in some Big scandals (they are on wiki:

2. The conservative party (they have the power, with only 34% of the vote) that are alway in boiling water, with a lot of world class dumb-ass minister. their way to do the job is to close the parliament when someone is asking to much question, and some of their EX-Ministers has been dismissed for Fraud, or because the "forgot" some Top-Secret files on their desk at home, and his girlfriend was affiliated with some bike gangs... or saying its not their fault it's the previous government fault so they can sign kyoto protocol... and they are involved in some dark afganistan Jail transfer and torture... so it's a very Flawless party

3. N.P.D they arent strong enough to take the power, and a part of the NPD's members are people that has been fired from other party because they didnt wanted to do something against their thinking (like selling a part of a provincial park to build condos so they get fired, and a new Minister arrived and sell the land...)

4. Le Bloc Québecois:
I said it in french because the Quebec people is always voting for this party, because the rest of the Canadian options arent good enough. anyway, they are just in quebec, so they cant take the power... its mathematicaly impossible...

5. The Green Party.
Well, they are greener than other party, but they cant talk about anything else than green things... but they get like 10% of the votes at the last elections

so for the moment, it's only bulshit that is discussed in the parialment
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