Liberation Therapy – CCSVI Theory Challenged

In 2009 Dr. Paolo Zamboni of Italy went public with his theory that Multiple Sclerosis was not an autoimmune disease but in fact a vascular disease that causes obstructed blood flow in the veins that drain the central nervous system. He developed this theory after his wife was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis in the early 90’s, a problem he set out to solve.

Since his theory went public there have been two opposing sides to this idea, those who believe it to be true and those who do not. Well, the CCSVI (Chronic Cerebrospinal Venous Insufficiency) theory is being challenged by a study being done by the McMaster University in Canada to test whether or not the “Liberation treatment” (surgery to restore blood flow in these narrowed veins) actually helps MS patients or not.

Though the study will not be complete for about another year, they are already finding much evidence that does not support Dr. Zamboni’s theory. For starters, the McMaster University examined 100 MS patients and 100 patients with no neurological disease at all and only found ONE patient with narrowed veins… 86 patients are participating in a double blind study where some will receive the actual procedure and some will receive a “placebo”.

“Our study provides compelling evidence against the idea that this CCSVI
hypothesis is actually associated with MS,” said Dr. Ian Rodger who led
the first study.

My Opinion

OK, I already know, I am going to catch a lot of flack for this, a lot of supporters of CCSVI are well known to believe in this religiously, but I honestly don’t believe in this CCSVI theory myself… I hear of so many people who have had the procedure done and a little while later any effects they see disappear if they saw any at all. Montel Williams had the Liberation treatment done and he said that the only difference he ever really saw was that his heat intolerance improved. “What’s been touted on the internet is that this is some kind of ‘liberation therapy’ for MS, and I’m going to say, right now, unequivocally, it is not.” Montel said in an interview with Dr. Oz after his procedure. He goes on to explain that it does not cure MS or the symptoms but it simply can help those symptoms of MS.

So maybe the Liberation treatment is nothing more than a placebo effect or maybe it really does relieve some symptoms of MS temporarily, I don’t know? Right now all we have to go off of is hearsay. But what I can say is this, MAYBE the narrowed veins do not CAUSE MS but MS causes the narrowed veins which (for those who have them) make MS symptoms worse? Either way, the evidence is clearly not matching with what Dr. Zamboni claimed so far… I forget (and can’t find) the numbers, but I remember reading about it a while back and he said that a lot (if not most) people with MS showed to have narrowed veins in the neck but the McMaster study has so far shown that almost no one had narrowed veins… I will be interested to see the results of this study when it is finished because I think it is too soon to come too any accurate conclusion on the matter.

What do you think? Does CCSVI causes MS or is CCSVI just nonsense? Share below!

38 Responses to Liberation Therapy – CCSVI Theory Challenged

  1. Anonymous says:

    I don't think I believe it is the cause….but I am very interested in how it relieves MS fatigue and mental clarity in so many patients. Sometimes I get tired and lightheadex and I FEEL like blood is not circulating right.

  2. Anonymous says:

    I had the procedure done and you know it works immediately. There are big pharma shills who run their rigged studies saying it doesn't work as here even some reporters who haven't a clue but a hand full of new found money saying it doesn't. But I am living proof it works. The key is having it done early prior to irreversible damage. This is what the bone heads in the studies concentrate on. They say well he still cant walk, well he has severe damage that take months or might never heal..I can tell you one dam thing you Big Pharma shills. It will not progress anymore.. I can also tell you Big Pharma puts out stories of hope on new studies for MS to sucker your donations in to support their meat grinding system. They don't want a cure its too lucrative.

    I will agree that there is confusion on the origin of MS. I have seen a study where they have isolated the gene that causes malformation of the vessel genes. I have also heard it was a virus that selectively hides out in vein tissue then causes scarring and damage thus MS. I also strongly believe that the industry itself on perpetuation of itself has placed these viruses in vaccines to insure continued business for the future and population control. Eugenics is alive and well. Remember they just admitted to adding the cancer gene to polio vaccines. How about the swine flu fiasco created by our govt explicit with WHO in the definition of pandemic to mass inoculate th population. Baxter one of the makers vaccine was accidentally caught by a smart lab worker who thought to test the supply first..All 12 ferrets were killed post injection. He called all areas of concern where it had been deployed world wide to stop this genocide. It was proposed by Epidemiologists there was a 99.99% chance this was done on purpose. There are too many safety regulations for such a bad strain to pass to the distribution phase for inoculation with out evil intent. Listen to all Follow none. In short MS is on the rise just as autism due to vaccines developed by all the NAZI companies brought over under operation paperclip. The Nazi's were never killed off just brought tu USA.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Would really like to explain my theory and explain that I did not have narrowed veins but rather a membrane that attached my valve so it was in a fixed position. My veins were "normal" but the valves were not. i still had ccsvi. the veins were Partially open restricting flow. The procedure did not "widen" my veins. The procedure released the membrane allowing the valve to fully open and fully close the way it was intended to. I would also like to note that in addition to this the procedure also stimulates a nerve that runs along side the jugular vein and it is the surgeons opinion that stimulating this nerve aids in restoring the autonomic functions that are out of wack. I have seen lasting improvements and really significant improvements. I do not believe that ccsvi is the cause of ms or a symptom of ms. I believe it is a separate disease that ms ( being a catch all for all symptoms) gets credit for symptoms that are common to ccsvi and ms. This is why in my opinion medications for fatigue for example don't always improve the fatigue. Sometimes there is another cause of the symptom and treating the cause when possible should always be the first course of action. Medication is all too often used as a mask. Ms is also all too often the reason for every ache pain and abnormality we experience. Sometimes in some people there are other valid / legitimate reasons and procedures that in fact can treat the cause. I do not believe that ccsvi is a placebo for me. Too many improvements have happened. I also believe that many factors contributed to my autonomic dysfunction, adrenal fatigue, medications building up creating toxins, lack of sleep, extreme prolonged stress, ms and lifestyle. Ccsvi ( the anatomy of my valves) also created a compromised circulatory system that contributed to the imbalance in my autonomic systems ( sleep patterns, digestion, elimination, muscle function, cognition, vision etc) fixing a few of the factors ( fixed circulatory, got off meds, improved lifestyle etc) took the stress off the autonomic system enough that it was able to "heal or reset" and improvements in other areas followed. It's too simple of thinking to attribute the liberation therapy as the ONE factor that is responsible for the improvements. Many factors need to be treated in order to note significant symptom abatement . Ccsvi simply is one piece of the puzzle but by no means do I believe that it is the ONLY factor that needs to be looked at.

    Are you taking prescriptions, do you eat toxins in your foods, are you living an emotionally stressful life? Are you experiencing limited mobility? Are you experiencing altered sleep patterns? Do you have circuitry problems? Every single one of these issues are contributors to autonomic dysfunction ( an imbalance in the processes in your body that happen automatically without thinking – sleep, breathing( ms hug anyone) digestion and elimination ( constipation or bladder issues?) to name just a few.

    So that's my experience and my theory based on the research I did on my own – online. It's not about ms it's about autonomic dysfunction and regaining balance in our bodies.

  4. Anonymous says:

    I think this works a lot better than the so called drugs (Avonex, Copaxone, Rebif, and Tysibri, without the side effects. No one has ever said that it was a cure, but many that have had it done have had many benefits. More benefits than any of the drugs. I was on Avonex (caused suicidal ideation)and Copaxone (caused large welts temp and pain) and had the CCSVI procedure. Got better balance, stronger legs, better eye sight and my feet and hands were warmer. I had this done in May of 2010. Still have many benefits. They have been trying to disprove this from the get go. If it wasn't for the fact that we are talking about people's health it would almost be comical what is going on. The reason why the last study did not prove anything was because it wasn't done properly. Neuro's have no business acting in this field. They should stick with what they know of this being an auto-immune disease. They are doing trials are something they don't know the cause of. Something that a person wouldn't know if that was the way their MS would have went anyway dispite treatment. It's a big pharma's dream disease.

  5. OK, I am not denying that it has helped many people, what I am asking is, why does it help some people and not others? I have PERSONALLY spoke to many people who have had the procedure done, ate well, did everything they could to improve, but saw ZERO results. I am not arguing a side, I am just asking questions.

    I can see how the pharmaceutical companies have a vested interest in not finding a "cure" for MS or anything that would compromise the amount of drugs they sell, a lot of doctors come off as nothing more than glorified drug pushers if you ask me. They would loose billions of dollars a year if they found a cure for MS, cancer, or Aids. But, even though most the DMD's are horrible and some are even dangerous, I can't deny that many people have seen amazing results like myself. Tysabri changed my life JUST THE SAME as some people say CCSVI changed their life and I have NO side effects what so ever.

    So I have to ask "why".

    Why does it help some and not other's because again, I have spoke to so many people all over the world that have had the procedure done and saw no changes in their health what so ever… People who traveled a great distance and payed lots of money and WANTED it to help them in some way shape or form. That to me says by reason of logic, that CCSVI is not the cause but maybe a FACTOR for SOME people, but not all. Maybe MS is causing the veins of SOME people to narrow and fixing that restricted blood flow in THOSE patients helps them but maybe not ALL of us have those restricted blood flows.

    It's easy to not come up with an answer for this and simply say that they are liars, they are paid by the pharmaceutical companies to feed us these stories, or to say that these people had the procedure done by people who did not know what they were doing, but that is just sweeping the problem under the rug instead of actually sitting down and asking ourselves, "why".

  6. flip flip says:

    I believe their is a cure already out there but big pharma doesn't want it out there, cause of the all mighty dollar.I been on Sf1019/Aimspro b4 and that drug reversed about 70percent of all the damage while i was taking it.The only thing is you had to take it every othtr day or most of the symptoms would come back.This drug has been stuck in phase two for a long time with no side effects at all.The FDA will not approve it for stage three for some odd reason.I can tell you i would choose this drug over a cure and i had the best ephoric feeling from having my body and brian hurt from ms for 11 years.I signed a pettion for Daval Internationals drug AIMSPRO to beable to get past phase 2 and be available for every one with ms.please!every one do the same if yo uhave ms or noe.

  7. flip flip says:

    This is the l for the pettion for AIMSPRO

  8. Well see, if CCSVI is the CAUSE of MS then why did that drug help you so much? I would say because CCSVI is not the cause of MS, it just effects many people with MS and makes MS worse and fixing the CCSVI relieve those symptoms because I am sure the DMD's are not improving blood flow haha.

    • flip flip says:

      I don't know to much about CCSVI but it for sure doesn't sound like a cure to me or every one would be saying it works.I do believe it helps with ms symptoms just like a lot of stuff can help with the symptoms.I would like to know how much this did work for you Matt and i do know a drug can work for one person while the person next to him it won't.

  9. Anonymous says:

    I don't just "believe" in CCSVI, I KNOW it is a problem for proper blood flow from the veins draining cerebral spinal fluid and blood from the brain. Whether it is the one and only CAUSE of the so-called condition of Multiple Sclerosis, that is not known yet, and factually, that doesn't matter!

    Chronic Venous Insufficiency has been a known, documented medical condition for decades. It was only when Dr. Zamboni specified the cerebrospinal veins, threatening the status quo of MS treatment, that it suddenly became a "controversy". MS is frequently mis-diagnosed. It is also a "diagnosis of exclusion" and "vascular malformations" were supposed to be ruled out before diagnosis, but I know many people, including myself, and NONE ever had their veins looked at before being diagnosed.

    It shouldn't make any difference if CCSVI is related to MS or not. Proper blood flow should be the default position for every human being!

  10. yes, that is all true, but it still doesn't address the fact that not all people with MS have narrowed veins….

  11. Oh and flip flop, I did not have CCSVI, but I have talked to many people who have had it and saw no results. Tysabri work incredibly for me!

  12. flip flip says:

    Flip flop?I don't think i was flip flopping on any thing , was i?Oh! i opoligize i thought you said you have taken it b4.I was asking about Aimspro if you have tried it before

  13. flip flip says:

    On Wednesday, McMaster University released a scanning study in the journal PLOS ONE that found virtually zero relationship between multiple sclerosis and CCSVI, a condition characterized by narrowed neck and chest veins identified by Italian venous specialist Paolo Zamboni.

    The research assessed 200 people—100 diagnosed with MS, 100 who had no history of the condition, or “normals,” using Doppler ultrasound and MRI. Only one participant, a man with primary progressive MS, met Zamboni’s ultrasound criteria for CCSVI. The finding represents a 180-degree swing from Zamboni’s contentious preliminary 2009 research that found a 100 per cent correlation between MS and CCSVI in 65 people with MS. The McMaster research contradicts other research (two examples here and here) that found most people with MS also had CCSVI — and also detected it in people not diagnosed with MS. It also eclipsed new research out of Italy investigating the safety and efficacy of angioplasty to treat CCSVI that found blockages in 98 per cent of 1,200 study subjects using ultrasound with venograms.

    Certainly the McMaster findings are not without precedent: other studies, two here and here, found zero correlation. Yet the press release announcing the McMaster study framed it as the definitive take-down: “McMaster University study debunks controversial MS theory.” As with everything else surrounding “controversial” CCSVI, opinion on this one is divided. Zamboni, unsurprisingly, countered with a letter to the journal critiquing the study’s screening methodology as outdated and for replacing his protocols with those of researchers who’d reported negative results.

  14. flip flip says:

    Traboulsee says the McMaster trial hasn’t affected his thinking: “He doesn’t see it as even a hiccup.” He speaks of the more than 100 patients who’ve travelled out of country for CCSVI treatment interviewed for a UBC patient registry. ”There’s less perception of [CCSVI treatment] being a cure but interest in how it can help with quality of life and managing MS,” he says. The clinical trial design was based on patient responses, he said: “We were using that information for improvements we should measure. And these are things not measured on classic MS scales: hands feeling warmer, heads feeling clearer–the sort of responses that people report experiencing.” He expects results by 2015, at the earliest. Meanwhile, the quest for clarity continues.

  15. Sorry, I read your name wrong, flip flip haha. But no, I had not been on it. And thing is, I am not denying you can find a bunch of people who had good results, but you cant base everything on that ONE group of people and just sweep those who saw no results under the rug for dear that they will make people questions CCSVI, so I again ask, why does it help some and not others, I find it interesting that no one can provide an answer to that…

  16. flip flip says:

    I do find it desturbing that his prior research contrdicts his new one.What if one guy did find a cure and the big pharma did know about it from all the hype like there is now about some thing like this.You don't think these big pharma companys would try to buy guy's like this off and small pharma to keep the billions in the revolving door?IWhen i hear the word cure it's like a make believe word for the average person unless your like Magic Johnson and able to get the aids drug treatment a decade b4 it comes out.

  17. No I do think they would do that but again, WHY DOES THE CCSVI PROCEDURE HELP SOME MS PATIENTS AND DO NOTHING FOR OTHERS, that is my question haha………

  18. Anonymous says:

    You ask:

    Every CCSVI advocate wants the answer to that question! But we also want to know why, if it helps SOME, is it FORBIDDEN for people with MS in Canada? Why is proper blood flow deemed necessary for kidney dialysis patients, people with Budd-Chiari syndrome, May Thurner syndrome, and more, but not for people who may have been mis-diagnosed but are branded with the MS label?

    I am an example of a remarkable success story and I am not the only one. I do know people who have tried it and only seen minor improvements, but that's better than no improvement at all! I have heard stories that some people haven't noticed any improvements but maybe the progression has at least been stopped!

    My "visible" improvements have been corroborated by neurological testing and my "invisible" improvements have been fabulous! Please see my before/after video on Lori Batchelor's youtube cannel:
    MS Mobility Improvement

    My question to you is: Doesn't everybody deserve the chance to try this if they want to?

  19. yes, I think they do, I would never suggest otherwise, but I think it is unfair that some advocates out there label it as the cure just because it worked for them because Tysabri works for me but its no cure because it doesn't work for everyone, just like CCSVI haha. Sure it should be available to try just like many other things, stem cells, or drugs like LDN. They all work for some and not others. This disease is so relevant to the individual and to say there is a one size fits all cure for it is just foolish in my opinion.

    • Anonymous says:

      I don't know why you say advocates call it a "cure"–the only time I've heard it referred to as a "cure" is by ignorant naysayers trying to dispute the benefits as not being total eradication. I respect your choice to use a deadly pharmaceutical with terrible side-effects and no evidence of relief of actual symptoms. I sincerely hope it decreases you number and severity of attacks–I know the fear of anticipating the "next" attack. But people with "progressive" forms of MS don't even have the choice to use the drugs and they are being DENIED the ONLY treatment that has EVER improved ANY symptoms. Any chance at any relief should be ALLOWED!

  20. Haha well, I have heard lots of people call it that.

    Terrible side effects and no evidence of relief of symptoms? Haha hmmm…. I have NO side effects, since I started I have not relapsed ONCE for almost a year and that is after relapsing every month and a half all year, and about 80% of my symptoms improved, for example, I am walking instead of using a wheelchair and I am no longer in so much pain that I have to pop 6 norcos a day. I would say that is pretty evident but I mean… what do I know haha?…

    Also there are mountains of scientific evidence supporting that it actually works, much more than CCSVI has (hearsay mostly), sooooo….. yeeeeaaaah…. haha? I am guessing you think it's all a conspiracy?

    People should have the option for CCSVI IF they even have the narrowed veins, I agree but to deny that some drugs help some people or that they are SO dangerous you will drop dead at any second is just…. Wow….

    • Anonymous says:

      Why are you attributing statements to me that I didn't say–sounds like fear talking! Just so you know, after 2 years and 3 severe and several minor attacks, I went 15 years without another "attack"–just slow, further progression downhill of my lingering symptoms. You have made your own risk/benefit analysis and I'm happy that you believe Tysabri helps you and I hope you continue to do well. Please keep checking your JC level–I've heard of many people testing negative but then later testing positive.

      "As of 4th June 2013 there have been 372 cases of natalizumab-associated PML; 85 (23%) MSers have died from PML and 287 (77%) are alive. Please note that the majority of those surviving have a poor functional outcome."

  21. Anonymous says:

    I had CCSVI and It didnt do anything for me.No relief of ANYTHING or CURED me..I have been on copaxone for 8yrs and since I am doing great after 21yrs of being diagnosed,Ill continue to take it..I think clearing out veins is a GREAT thing but doesnt help everybody..Ill keep smiling and living each day until they find a cure!

    • Anonymous says:

      I'm glad you're not taking one of the interferons that have been proven not to have any long-term effect now that they've been on the market for awhile.

      "In conclusion, we did not find evidence that administration of interferon beta was associated with a reduction in disability progression in patients with relapsing-remitting MS. The ultimate goal of treatment for MS is to prevent or delay long-term disability. Our findings bring into question the routine use of interferon beta drugs to achieve this goal in MS. It is, however, possible that a subgroup of patients benefit from interferon beta treatment and that this association would not be discernable in our comprehensive “real-world” study. Further work is needed to identify these potential patients; perhaps through pharmacogenomic or biomarker studies, paving the way for a tailored, personalized medicine approach. Our findings also encourage the investigation of novel therapeutics for MS."

      *********My favorite part: "Our findings also encourage the investigation of novel therapeutics for MS."*********

  22. I think THAT is the right attitude, to not become "anti-CCSVI" just because it didnt work and to be able to see it works for some and not everyone, that's how it should be seen! Thanks for sharing!

  23. Hi Matt,
    I certainly don't have much to "throw in" here simce I am probably considered a "newbie" but this is all making some sense to me now. My MRI's have shown I have narrowing of my left side artery (ceratoid)and I do have a pretty bad issue with CSF collecting in my brain and on my optic nerves. I do not know which came first – all I care about IS finding the right med (or whatever) to help. I understand you Matt, and if I had to pick, I would try Tysabri. Will find out when I go to the MS specialist in Boston next month. I would LOVE to know though, on how many peeps have issues with CSF collecting in the brain. I've had (recently) a LP and the pressure was at 24 (?) – which one doc said wasn't bad, but another said it wasn't good – THAT'S why I am going to Boston – HA!
    Anyways, Thanks for reading!
    Kim Simon

  24. Anonymous says:

    The evidence points to Zamboni being a snake oil salesman

  25. Anonymous says:

    The three earliest MRI results I have in my possession all clearly state that there was "vascular compromise", yet no neurologist was compelled to mention this very important information to me. I only found out when my GP retired and my records were released to me. I suspect the vascular implications have long been known and totally ignored. The neurologists I have seen since acquiring this information do not openly support the reports, but neither are they able to deny them. Proof enough to me that Dr. Zamboni's discovery has merit.
    Venous insufficiency can occur anywhere in the body, so rather than debating it's existence, they should be researching the differences in the MS population and why some respond and others don't.

  26. Haha hmmm, fear? Of….. What?

    And yes, I am well aware of the risk factors of PML and what it does to your body and how likely you are to die from it. That is why they test for it every 6 months and continuously monitor you to make sure you are ok. I see my neuro every month before an infusion. The small percentage of PML cases does not change the fact that for a huge majority of people taking Tysabri, they see great results. Not EVERYONE reacts to the drug, but those who do, seem to react well.

    So even if we say EVERYONE with MS had narrowed veins, why would a drug like Tysabri help unless it was helping something that CAUSES the narrowed veins? Again, I am just asking third person questions.

    Also, IDK that it's "snake oil" he is selling, there are definitely interesting truths to this, but not absolute truths because obviously not EVERYONE with MS has these narrowed veins and not EVERYONE responds to the CCSVI treatment which means SOMETHING, a fact that people seem to simply ignore which helps NO ONE but the people pushing the CCSVI agenda…. This to me is unfair….

    • Anonymous says:

      The "CCSVI Agenda"???? I don't understand what you mean? CCSVI advocates are not trying to force ANYBODY to have venous angioplasty if they don't want it! They just want the basic human right to choose this treatment if they want to try it! Not everybody responds to chemotherapy, or even acne medication–does that mean NOBODY should have the right to try it even though it might work?

  27. Anonymous says:


    NEW: Updated PML risk numbers–1 per 330–
    With more than 115,000 patients globally treated with natalizumab (Tysabri) for longer periods of time, that estimate of PML risk is 1 per 330. In patients who test positive for antibodies to JCV, have a clinical history of immune suppressive treatment before natalizumab, and have received more than 24 doses, the number of PML cases is 1 per 90.

  28. Haha what does PML and Tysabri have to do with this? If it is believed that CCSVI is the cause of MS, that MS is a vascular disease not an auto immune disease, why do some people like myself respond so well to certain MS treatments and why do some people not respond at all to CCSVI treatments? That is the questions I am addressing.

    • Anonymous says:

      You haven't had the treatment, or even the diagnostic testing for CCSVI so how do you know you wouldn't respond? If you can't grasp that there may be a vascular component to MS, then tell me why are vascular malformations supposed to be ruled out before diagnosis? (although they never have been in the very many people I know with the diagnosis!)

      In the absence of pathognomonic clinical features or a definitive laboratory test, multiple sclerosis (MS) remains ultimately a diagnosis of exclusion. Accurate diagnosis is increasingly important with available disease modifying therapy. Unfortunately the rate of misdiagnosis remains around 5%-10%, indicating that 1 in 20 patients thought to have MS has, instead, a condition resembling MS. In this review we describe conditions that may be confused with MS because they can present as lesions disseminated in time, space, or both. Conditions often confused with MS may be inflammatory (systemic lupus erythematosus, Sjögren's syndrome, vasculitis, sarcoidosis, Behçet's disease), infectious (Lyme disease, syphilis, progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy, HTLV-1 infection, herpes zoster), genetic (lysosomal disorders, adrenoleukodystrophy, mitochondrial disorders, CADASIL), metabolic (vitamin B12 deficiency), neoplastic (CNS lymphoma) and spinal (degenerative and vascular malformations) diseases. The key to the accurate diagnosis of MS is vigilance for atypical features, suggesting the possibility of an alternative diagnosis.

  29. You skipping my main point again, there are many people who HAVE gone in to fine NO narrowed veins and people even in theese comments who did not respond, I am not talking about me here, I am just asking "why" but no one can answer that it seems haha

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *