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Disclaimer: 'MS Views and News' DOES NOT endorse any products or services found on this blog. It is up to you to seek advice from your healthcare provider. The intent of this blog is to provide information on various medical conditions, medications, treatments, and procedures for your personal knowledge and to keep you informed of current health-related issues. It is not intended to be complete or exhaustive, nor is it a substitute for the advice of your physician. Should you or your family members have any specific medical problem, seek medical care promptly.

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Friday, April 2, 2010

Bridging the gap between MS organizations

A couple of weeks ago, we started a series of posts profiling non-profit organizations that are helping families affected by genetic disease.


Click here to read this of the organization that is helping to bridge gaps.


And the possibilities of MS being partly genetic.




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Remain up-to-date and Informed with Multiple Sclerosis News and Information. If not yet receiving the "Stu's Views and MS Related News", weekly M.S. e-newsletter, then please take 20 seconds to register at: http://www.msviewsandnews.org. - - Thank you -

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Stu's Views & M.S. News is filled with information relating to Multiple Sclerosis

MS Views and News, hosts the 2010 MS GETTY - an education program for multiple sclerosis patients



Click on the banner shown above, to read of the Multiple Sclerosis education program (called The GETTY) taking place on April 24th in Miami and honoring a local MS Neurologist who has basically given his Life to MS research and patient care.

It's not just about this doctor though.It's an MS education program and we are expecting over 200 to attend. Two local MS Neurologists will discuss topics that include current therapy updates, treatments on the horizon, Stem cell treatment and an update on CCSVI.

Various MS educators will be there to either support the program or the doctor being honored.

THIS program requires an RSVP as space is limited. See the brochure to learn more.

If you have any questions contact Stuart Schlossman - stuart@msviewsandnews.org

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CCSVI- Diagnosis and Treatment Log Entry #8 - By Mitch Sturgeon

The world is a tragedy to those who feel, but a comedy to those who think.
- Horace Walpole

My journey through CCSVI self-education, diagnosis, and treatment has been one of the most remarkable experiences of my life, whether or not I ever see any benefit from it.

So with all that I have learned and all that I have now experienced, what is my position on the CCSVI – MS connection? From a purely scientific point of view, nothing is yet proven. We have pilot studies. We have anecdotal evidence. We have well thought out theories. We have incredible enthusiasm among patients and some doctors. We have trials in progress (not enough, mind you). We simply don’t have irrefutable, scientific proof of the nature of the connection yet, especially for the relatively rare primary progressive MS (my type).

I do have a scientific background, and that part of me will not be satisfied until much more data is independently collected and analyzed. But I am also an MS patient and an MS advocate. This side of me does not demand the same burden of proof as my scientific side does. The good news is that I don’t have to choose a single perspective. I can honor them both.

I am personally convinced that to some extent CCSVI contributes to or even causes MS, although I can’t prove it. I don't know how robust that relationship is, but I feel that there is something profound going on here. Again, I am less informed and therefore less confident about the relationship between CCSVI and primary progressive MS than I am about the relationship between CCSVI and the more common relapsing remitting MS.

Given this, what do I believe should happen next? I'm glad you asked.

I believe that every person on the planet with clinically definite multiple sclerosis should be tested for CCSVI. Unfortunately, I'm not exactly sure what I mean by “tested.” Relying on the run-of-the-mill MRV and ultrasound examinations isn't the answer. There are only a few clinics in the world that are proficient at using these noninvasive tests to diagnose CCSVI. That is not a reason to stop using these tests, but rather a reason to become better at using them- through practice. The gold standard is the catheter venogram, and even that needs to be performed by an interventional radiologist who has some level of competency or at least genuine interest in CCSVI. Every MS patient deserves to know if the veins that drain their central nervous system are functioning properly, and they deserve to know that now.

CONTINUE reading from Mitch's Blog "Enjoying the Ride"


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Remain up-to-date and Informed with Multiple Sclerosis News and Information. If not yet receiving the "Stu's Views and MS Related News", weekly M.S. e-newsletter, then please take 20 seconds to register at: http://www.msviewsandnews.org. - - Thank you -

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MS and Your Emotions Part One

From MS Learn Online - a program from the National MS Society

Part one of a two-part video webcast series that explores:
  • The "why me?" question
  • Living with the uncertainty of MS
  • My self-esteem
If you have a pop-up blocker, you will need to disable it prior to participating in a MS Learn Online webcast.


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Remain up-to-date and Informed with Multiple Sclerosis News and Information. If not yet receiving the "Stu's Views and MS Related News", weekly M.S. e-newsletter, then please take 20 seconds to register at: http://www.msviewsandnews.org. - - Thank you -

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Thursday, April 1, 2010

Imaging sheds light on multiple sclerosis



A safe, noninvasive method for looking inside patients with MS offers promise for treating this complex disease
By Michael C. Purdy

More than a century after multiple sclerosis (MS) was first recognized as a distinct pathologic disorder, its hallmark continues to be its frustrating unpredictability. Francis Clark, diagnosed with the autoimmune condition in high school, has learned to live with it. According to Clark, “MS is simply a fact of life.”
MS symptoms — inflammation of the optic nerve, loss of muscle strength and balance problems, to name just a few — can cause a wide range of problems. No two people have the same experience with MS and, as Clark points out, a flare-up of one or more symptoms can happen at any time, with varying recovery times.
“It seems to happen in a three-year cycle or close to it,” she says of her own disease. “Sometimes I get better very quickly, and sometimes it takes a long time. It can be very frustrating, not just for me, but also for my family. ”
But the veil of unpredictability is finally starting to give way. Neurologists, radiologists and others at the School of Medicine have teamed up to show that an imaging technique, diffusion tensor imaging (DTI), can help assess damage to the optic nerves from MS. Now they are working to apply the same technique to other MS lesions that lead to symptoms affecting a broad range of the body. The questions they are posing about MS may one day allow better prognostic information and contribute to identifying more effective treatments.
Continue reading by clicking here

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Extracranial Doppler sonographic criteria of chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency in the patients with multiple sclerosis

Int Angiol. 2010 Apr;29(2):109-14. - Pre-release

Simka M, Kostecki J, Zaniewski M, Majewski E, Hartel M.

Department of Angiology, Private Healthcare Institution SANA, Pszczyna, Poland - mariansimka@poczta.onet.pl.

AIM: The aim of this open-label study was to assess extracranial Doppler criteria of chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency in multiple sclerosis patients.


METHODS: Seventy patients were assessed: 49 with relapsing-remitting, 5 with primary progressive and 16 with secondary progressive multiple sclerosis. The patients were aged 15-58 years and they suffered from multiple sclerosis for 0.5-40 years. Sonographic signs of abnormal venous outflow were detected in 64 patients (91.4%).


RESULTS: We found at least two of four extracranial criteria in 63 patients (90.0%), confirming that multiple sclerosis is stronghly associated with chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency. Additional transcranial investigations may increase the rate of patients found positive in our survey. Reflux in internal jugular and/or vertebral veins was present in 31 cases (42.8%), stenosis of internal jugular veins in 61 cases (87.1%), not detectable flow in internal jugular and/or vertebral veins in 37 cases (52.9%) and negative difference in cross-sectional area of the internal jugular vein assessed in the supine vs. sitting position in 28 cases (40.0%). Flow abnormalities in the vertebral veins were found in 8 patients (11.4%). Pathologic structures (membranaceous or netlike septa, or inverted valves) in the junction of internal jugular vein with brachiocephalic vein were found in 41 patients (58.6%), in 15 patients (21.4%) on one side only and in 26 patients (37.1%) bilaterally.


CONCLUSION: Multiple sclerosis is highly correlated with chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency. These abnormalities in the extracranial veins draining the central nervous system can exist in various combinations. The most common pathology in our patients was the presence of an inverted valve or another pathologic structure (like membranaceous or netlike septum) in the area of junction of the IJV with the brachiocephalic vein.

PMID: 20351666 [PubMed - in process]

SOURCE: PUBMED click URL
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Remain up-to-date and Informed with Multiple Sclerosis News and Information. If not yet receiving the "Stu's Views and MS Related News", weekly M.S. e-newsletter, then please take 20 seconds to register at: http://www.msviewsandnews.org. - - Thank you -

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Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Data from EMD Serono's Multiple Sclerosis Portfolio to be Presented at the 62nd Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Neurology

New data on established therapy Rebif® and on investigational therapy Cladribine Tablets to be presented at AAN underscore EMD Serono’s commitment to multiple sclerosis care and research

Press Release Source: EMD Serono, Inc. On Wednesday March 31, 2010, 8:00 am EDT

ROCKLAND, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--EMD Serono, Inc., an affiliate of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, today announced that new data from the company’s multiple sclerosis (MS) portfolio of approved and investigational treatments will be presented at the 62nd Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Neurology (AAN) taking place April 10 to 17, in Toronto, Canada. The data presented will focus on Rebif® (interferon beta-1a), an established therapy for relapsing forms of MS, and Cladribine Tablets, a potential oral therapy for relapsing forms of MS currently under regulatory review in a number of countries.

“We have made a commitment as a leading company in this field to advance the treatment of multiple sclerosis and the underlying science,” said Bernhard Kirschbaum, PhD, Executive Vice President, Global Research and Development at Merck Serono, a division of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany. “The data presented at the upcoming AAN meeting will further contribute to the existing body of knowledge about Rebif® and Cladribine Tablets, as well as to a greater understanding of the disease.”

The following abstracts have been accepted for presentation at the 62nd AAN Annual Meeting:

>> CLICK to read these abstracts and more


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Remain up-to-date and Informed with Multiple Sclerosis News and Information. If not yet receiving the "Stu's Views and MS Related News", weekly M.S. e-newsletter, then please take 20 seconds to register at: http://www.msviewsandnews.org. - - Thank you -

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Study To Evaluate Treating Chronic Cerebrospinal Venous Insufficiency (CCSVI) in Multiple Sclerosis Patients

Information provided by Rusty
Wow and Yes, this will take place in The USA

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This study is not yet open for participant recruitment.
Verified by The Vascular Group, PLLC, March 2010

The purpose of this Study is to evaluate safety, feasibility and efficacy of percutaneous transluminal angioplasty in treating extracranial venous obstructive lesions, and its influence on the clinical outcomes of Multiple Sclerosis (MS) patients.

Patients enrolled in the study will have a diagnosis of Multiple Sclerosis diagnosed according to the revised McDonald Criteria (MD) criteria, and will meet the eligibility criteria.

Click here to continue to review this information from the ClinicalTrials.gov website



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Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Old Theories about Multiple Sclerosis (Like Aspartame) That Have Been Disproved

Over the years, people have suggested many different causes for MS. Here are some of the most popular theories that have been proved incorrect:

  • Owning a dog or other small pet
    Some years ago, canine distemper, a virus carried by dogs, was proposed as a cause of MS, but research has since ruled out household pets as the culprit.
  • Allergies
    There is no evidence that MS is triggered by a reaction to a specific environmental allergen. Since allergies are common in the general population, allergies can occur in a person with MS.
  • Exposure to heavy metals
    Although poisoning with heavy metals such as mercury, lead or manganese can damage the nervous system and produce symptoms such as tremor and weakness, both the process and the symptoms are different from what occurs in MS. There is no evidence that heavy metal exposure causes MS.
  • Physical trauma
    A 1999 report of the Therapeutics and Technology Assessment Subcommittee of the American Academy of Neurology, based on a comprehensive study of the literature on the subject, concluded that "the evidence supports no association between physical trauma and either MS onset or MS exacerbation." Read their report in the journal Neurology or read more about trauma and MS.
  • Aspartame
    No scientific evidence supports the claims on several Web sites that aspartame, an artificial sweetener used in many diet soft drinks and other foods, causes MS.
Source: National MS Society - click


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Scientists find there may be two forms of multiple sclerosis

Information reported to the editor of this blog by Karen H in Ft. Myers, Fl.

March 29, 2010

By Val Willingham - CNN Medical Producer

Scientists and doctors who study multiple sclerosis know, as of now, one of the best way to treat the condition is with beta-interferon. But over the years, the drug's effectiveness has been lukewarm in some people causing a third of all MS patients who are on the drug to suffer from uncomfortable flu-like side effects. Many can't handle it and so far, researchers have never figured out why.

Now scientists from Stanford University School of Medicine may have discovered that there are actually two kinds of multiple sclerosis and that each reacts differently to the standard treatment.

Researchers know multiple sclerosis is triggered when immune cells, called T cells, attack the myelin sheathing, which insulates neurons in the body. Healthy myelin sheathing is essential for the nervous system to function properly. When this material is attacked, it can cause serious symptoms including paralysis and blindness in those with MS.

In this study, published in the current issue of Nature Medicine, researchers established animal models of multiple sclerosis by injecting mice with myelin into their immune systems, causing it to attack the animals' own myelin nerve-cell coatings, much as MS attacks a human being’s. By looking at these animals and treating them with beta-interferon and then testing their blood the researcher found there were actually two different types of MS, caused by different patterns of T cells in the body. So what works for one, doesn't necessarily work for the other.

The researchers found that beta-interferon improved the condition of animals who had MS caused by gamma-interferon-secreting T cells, but made the symptoms worse in those mice whose MS was caused by IL-17-secreting T cells.

Intrigued, the investigators turned to humans. One of the study's authors, Dr. Brigit deJong, had previously been involved in research in Amsterdam in which multiple sclerosis patients were treated with beta-interferon and closely followed. The Stanford group obtained blood samples taken from 26 of these patients both before and about two years after the initial treatment. Without knowing which samples came from patients who had responded well or poorly to beta-interferon treatment, they went about measuring IL-17 levels in those samples. The human results were much like the animal models. Those with high amounts of IL-17 T cells had had negative reactions to beta-interferon.

"By making these distinctions in large human studies, people with multiple sclerosis might someday be able to take a simple blood test to see whether they are likely to respond to treatment with the standard multiple-sclerosis therapy." says senior study author Lawrence Steinman, M.D. of the Neurology and Neurological Sciences Department at the Stanford University School of Medicine.

If an inexpensive test can be developed to detect IL-17 in humans, MS patients and their doctors will know whether beta interferon is or isn't going to work. "For those who don't have the IL-17 T cells," notes Steinman, "those patients can receive beta-interferon and probably not in a diluted form but in a higher dose, which will help them better fight their illness."

According to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society MS affects 400,000 people in the United States. Dr. Patricia A. O'Looney, vice president of biomedical research for the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, says the new research is very exciting. "Obviously this will need more testing in human subjects," explains O’Looney, "But this is a positive step in the right direction to helping to treat MS and other autoimmune conditions."

Posted by:



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Multiple Sclerosis Telephone Support Group for Newly Diagnosed (within 2 years)

Telephone Support Group for Newly Diagnosed (within 2 years)


For South, North and Central Florida


Date: Wednesday, March 31st, 2010


Time: 7:00 PM to 8:00 PM

*Please call-in 5 minutes before start time


Topic: Communication and Maintaining Relationships


Call in number: 1-800-910-3597


Passcode: 24906202


Facilitator: Susan Dorne, OT


Contact information:

email: leseth143@aol.com


Subject: Support Group


The National MS Society: 1 800 FIGHT MS


Monday, March 29, 2010

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