However, while the debate over CCSVI and MS continues, new data suggests that Dr. Zamboni may have gotten it right in looking at the veins for treatment, but it might not be venous abnormalities that are the real problem, with a team of California-based researchers contending that it is the nerves surrounding the veins not the veins themselves that are being treated by ballooning, with expansion of the jugular vein leading to stimulation of the autonomic nerve fibers, which run alongside the jugular and are responsible for communication between the brain and the central nervous system. They say that ongoing research and a growing body of clinical data strongly indicate that Dr. Zamboni’s CCSVI procedure may be the first viable treatment for an even more pervasive problem — dysautonomia — which is seen not only in almost all MS patients but also in patients diagnosed with a long list of other diseases and conditions. As a result, they believe the CCSVI procedure is better described by the term TVAM (Transvascular Autonomic Modulation).
Conclusion: The combination of balloon angioplasty of anatomically normal veins coupled with external compression during dilation of these veins can improve indicators of ANS dysfunction. The safety and efficacy of TVAM in MS patients observed in this pilot study is encouraging, paving the way for the treatment of dysautonomia in pathological states other than MS. Further studies should investigate TVAM in a larger MS cohort.
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