The Zamboni Theory holds the world enthralled with the promise of miracle relief for people suffering the symptoms of multiple sclerosis. Daily, we hear reports of astounding results with the “Liberation Procedure.” While the science community and the MS Society hesitate to approve this procedure without more research, newspaper editorials and politicians encourage wide scale accessibility to the “Liberation” treatment and tell us that people with MS should be allowed to hope.
In the conclusion to his research paper, Dr Zamboni states that clinically defined Multiple Sclerosis (CDMS) is strongly associated with chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency (CCSVI), a scenario that he says has not previously been described, characterized by blocked and narrowed veins of unknown cause.
With the worldwide response to Zamboni’s theory, and huge expectations, I am puzzled that no representative of the research or health care system has done a literature review.
After 14 years of being told that I was imagining things, I was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 1967, and told I did not have long. I turned to research and found my own answers for recovery from all symptoms, and for a life of wellness. To maintain a balanced perspective, I have continued to look to research for facts and evidence.
When the “Liberation” theory was published, I happened to be reading a book, published in 1982 by Swedish neurologist Patrick Stortebecker describing the history of research in the Cranio-Vertebral Venous system CVS, with 241 references to other studies. He describes work published in 1884 by neurologist Pierre Marie dealing with concerns about society’s serious dental problems, and the resulting symptoms of neurological diseases, including sclerose en plaques, the French term for ms.
Stortebecker engages in a detailed discussion of studies by German researchers, Driak, Aiginger, Bottan and Neumayer, and chides the medical system for ignoring research that stresses the role of oral and dental infections in the pathogenesis of nervous disorders including multiple sclerosis.
Stortebecker(1961) observed that the vertebral veins were described more than 400 years ago, and known since the time of the Italian GABRIEL FALLOPIO (1523-1562) and THOMAS WILLIS (1664).(Author’s capitols.)
Stortebecker also describes the extra and intracranial venous systems with references to Bock, who in 1823, demonstrated most completely, the rich venous plexuses of the spinal canal [extracranial] and pointed out that sacral branches of the internal iliac veins, as well as the lumbar, thoracic and cervical veins communicate freely with the veins within the spinal canal through the anterior spinal formina.(Author’s italics.) Stortebecker also describes the movement of inflammation and toxins in the cranial vertebral venous system (CVS) in multiple sclerosis, and other neurological diseases in Section VII of this paper.
As a yoga practitioner, it is interesting to note that deep breathing causes enough pressure in veins, to constrict and move material.
Stortebecker refers to a clinical study of 140 ms patients with a history of optic neuritis: 88% showed signs of decayed and infected teeth and all 88% improved after dental care.
While Zamboni writes that multiple venous strictures of unknown origin cause ms, descriptions of causes of these strictures have been published for over a hundred years.
In my experience as a patient, I have fired, or been fired by, more than one doctor for being insistent, at times, that symptoms dismissed as “just your ms,” were in fact, the result of untreated inner ear, or sinus infections. So I am sensitive to the haste to link every neurological symptom to multiple sclerosis. (see my Doppler-Ultrasound test)
In 1985, a family member experienced “funny” symptoms, and a tour of referrals ended in the office of a neurologist who did not hesitate to diagnose ms. However, after extraction of all four wisdom teeth, the dentist said that one had been infected. and suggested that chewing released inflammation and toxins causing the symptoms. There has been NO recurrence of symptoms.
So while a huge body of research supports the theory that blockages in the cranial cerebral venous system can cause neurological symptoms, more work is needed to prove whether or not this is the cause of multiple sclerosis. That the Liberation treatment gives relief is an exciting solution, but is it really the cure?
Dr Zamboni adds that only long term clinical and MRI observation is capable of establishing the possible conversion of clinically isolated syndrome (CIS), that is, some questionable symptoms, into a case of clinically defined ms, CDMS.
Perhaps the old name “diffuse, disseminated sclerosis,” has more meaning than multiple sclerosis?
Dr Zamboni has declared strictures in the craniovenous system (CVS) to be chronic, and coined the term “chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency” (CCSVI). Peptide researcher Candace Pert has commented on the confusion caused by changing terminology, and says that medical researchers would rather use each others’ toothbrushes than each others’ scientific terms.
By pointing us in a different direction, Dr Zamboni has done us all a favor.
People with ms have awakened to their power to change the way things are done. Bravo! Hopefully, more people in the Health Care system will re-search the research we already have, for simple new treatments. Hopefully, we finally recognize and admit, the importance of Dental Care to general Health, and give it priority over drug coverage.
MY hope is, that clinicians will look seriously at the research we already have on possible causes of the strictures – dental problems, along with sinus, tonsil, throat and lymph infections, and take more time, as suggested by Rodriguez of the Mayo Clinic, and Zamboni himself, to attach the label multiple sclerosis to neurological symptoms.
MY hope is, that Health Care professionals will consult past research for new information. Many authors have proven to be ahead of their time.
I know it’s called re-search, but let’s stop going in circles.
Research is full of miracles – not always what, where or when we expect.
The Globe and Mail, Saturday, October 15, 2010
‘Liberation therapy’ doctor tells MS patients to wait, by Adrian Morrow
This article reports that Dr Zamboni told a recent MS conference in Gothenburg, Sweden, that surgery is not recommended at this stage, that patients should not go ahead with such surgery, except in the case of clinical trials.
P Zamboni, R Galeotti R, E Menegatti, AM Malagoni, G Tacconi G, S Dall’Ara, I Bartolomei and F Salvi. Chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency in patients with multiple sclerosis. J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry April 80(4): 362-99. 2009
Zamboni P, Menegatti E, Bartolomei I, Galeotti R, Malagoni AM, Tacconi G, Salvi F.Intracranianl Venous Haemodynamics in Multiple Sclerosis. Curr Neurovasc Res. Nov;4(4):252-8. 2007
Stortebecker Patrick. Dental Caries as a cause of Nervous Disorders: Epilepsy – Schizophrenia – Multiple Sclerosis – Brain Cancer. Stortebecker Foundation for Research. Stockholm, Sweden. 1982.
Marie P. Sclerose en plaques et Maladies infectieuses. Progres Med 12L:287-283, 305-307, 349-351, 365-366, 1884
Willis Th. Cerebri Anatome. London 1664. Quoted by Harris. Ref by Stortebecker.p12.
Bock AC. Darstellung der Venen. Leipzig, 1823, Quoted by Harris, Ref by Stortebecker.p12.
Pert Candace. Your Body is your Subconscious Mind. Sounds True Inc, Boulder Colorado, 2000.
Rodriguez Moses. Mayo Clinic Study Indicates Patients with Multiple Sclerosis May Want to Take Wait-and-See Approach to Medications. Mayo Clinic Health Information, Monday, August 30, 2004.