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Purpose of review: To review the most current literature relating to chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency (CCSVI).

Recent findings: Recently, a vascular phenomenon known as CCSVI was proposed to be the cause of multiple sclerosis (MS). Its prevalence reportedly reflected 100% sensitivity and specificity for the disease. The authors went on to perform invasive procedures for the treatment of CCSVI with questionable success. Since then, many have tried to duplicate the data outlined in the original studies, but none have achieved remotely similar outcomes. Furthermore, there is conflicting information regarding the safety of invasive treatment for CCSVI.

Summary: MS is a complex and devastating disease with imperfect treatment strategies. Further research is needed to determine what role, if any, venous insufficiency plays in the course of MS and also the most appropriate treatment course based on those results.

(C) 2011 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.