Tracie Welsh hates MRIs, she hates giving herself injections, and she hates having MS.
Now, she is trying a new kind of treatment: CCSVI (chronic cerebro-spinal venous insufficiency).
It is a very new and controversial procedure. CCSVI is a condition where veins in the neck get narrowed. This procedure allows blocked veins to get the proper drainage of blood from the brain. The back-up helps leave iron deposits on the brain.
Thousands of people have been clamoring for this potential cure. There are Facebook pages devoted to it, there have been angry protests, and there has been general anxiety among patients with the illness who think they can benefit from this new simple procedure by Italian vascular surgeon Dr. Paolo Zamboni. The story bubbled up to the boiling point and onto the pages of The New York Times in an amazing in-depth story about the procedure and the patient frustration.
Welsh is a mom in British Columbia, Canada who is blogging about her struggle with MS, and her search for a cure. Read her blog posts here.
In a The New York Times article, it explains in great detail the intense demand and patient frenzy for the chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency (CCSVI) treatment.
The article says:
Dr. Zamboni believes that the disease, which damages the nervous system, may be caused by narrowed veins in the neck and chest that block the drainage of blood from the brain. He has reported in medical journals that opening those veins with the kind of balloons used to treat blocked heart arteries—an experimental treatment he calls the “liberation procedure”— can relieve symptoms.
The Internet can be credited with spreading the news about the radical idea and treatment. The doctors who have tried the procedure in the United States have been thwarted, and Dr. Zamboni is overwhelmed.
Welsh explains: “Maybe if I write to you in a personal diary, you’ll see that we’re not just one, but many. We’re an entire community, and we can get together to become a force. Maybe the ideas we share will help us to change the opinions of people in the government and medical communities. I don’t know, I’m going to try.”