I was sorry we were not able to meet at the conference. I should address your concerns, because I have spoken at length about them with Dr. Dake-
1) There is no evidence at present regarding the end results of stents placed in the veins in parts of the body subjected to a wide range of movement (like the neck is). There is widespread consensus that stents in such location may fracture.
There was not a "widespread consensus" of fracture. In fact, it was brought up by a couple of doctors. Dr. Dake spoke to many venous surgeons after his presentation, and they understood what he is doing, and want to do the same. There have been instances of arterial stent fractures, but as you know, arteries and veins are completely different.
2) Dr Dake reported a number of complications with the procedure, which are absent in Zamboni's experience with angioplasty (balloon dilatation).
This is indeed true. However, restenosis occurs in 50% of all of the jugular ballooning procedures done by Dr. Zamboni.
3) Zamboni has not used stents in the jugular veins (I trust he knows why).
Dr. Zamboni has been quoted as saying he was waiting to develop an appropriatly shaped stent (with a lip) to use in the lower jugular, to avoid migration. Dr. Dake is finding stenosis in the higher jugular area and has appropriate stents for that area which do not migrate, and have been endothelialized in all of the patients treated. Dr. Zamboni's team also mentioned at the conference that they are considering stenting and open neck surgery for the jugulars, because of the high level of restenosis in the jugulars.
4) Dr Dake is a cardio-thoracic surgeon with no neurological background.
This is true, and he said these words at the conference and to all his patients. However, venous stenosis and reflux is not good for any part of the body, as shown by Dr. Haacke's SWI reports on microbleeding and iron deposition in the brain.
For those patients who want to wait for more research, there is no need to have a stenting or ballooning procedure right now. But for those who have gone ahead, we need to thank them for their bravery and desire to find a cure for this dreadful disease. But certainly, your cautionary post is appreciated!
Husband dx RRMS 3/07
dx dual jugular vein stenosis (CCSVI) 4/09
dual stents placed 5/09
CCSVI in MS