Chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency in multiple sclerosis: A historical perspective

Michael D. Dake, Robert Zivadinov, E. Mark Haacke

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


Chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency (CCSVI) is a term used to describe impaired venous drainage from the central nervous system (CNS) caused by abnormalities in anatomy and flow affecting the extra cranial veins. Recently, it has been proposed that CSVI may contribute to the pathogenesis of multiple sclerosis (MS). It is hypothesized that venous obstruction results in abnormal flow that promotes inflammation at the blood-brain barrier and that this triggers a process marked by a disturbance of homeostasis within the CNS that leads to demyelination and neuro degeneration. The venous abnormalities of CCSVI are often diagnosed by ultrasound or magnetic resonance veno graphy, however the prevalence of CCSVI detailed in groups of MS patients and patients without MS varies widely in published reports. Increased standardization of diagnostic studies to evaluate both anatomical and physiological findings associated with CCSVI is needed. The purpose of this article is to provide a background to understand the development of the theory of CCSVI and to frame the relevant issues regarding its diagnosis and relationship to the pathogenesis of MS.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)181-195
Number of pages15
JournalFunctional Neurology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2011


  • Association
  • Blood-brain barrier
  • Chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency
  • Demyelination
  • Diagnosis
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Pathogenesis
  • Vascular

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Neuroscience
  • Clinical Neurology


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