How is CCSVI evaluated?
CCSVI is evaluated through the use of Doppler ultrasound with equipment that is specifically designed to examine blood flow in the veins that drain blood from the brain. It is a non-invasive exam, and follows the same primary evaluation technology used by Dr. Zamboni.
Venous circulation in the neck and brain is a relatively new field of study. Prior to the discovery of CCSVI, it was common to only evaluate the arterial flow when performing a circulatory evaluation in the neck and brain and not evaluate venous flow. This is why venous insufficiency as affecting the nervous system was unknown for so long.
The exam is conducted by a trained sonographer. A handheld device called a transducer utilizes sound waves to evaluate blood flow in the veins draining the brain.
What is the procedure to evaluate CCSVI?
In both seated and lying down (supine) positions, each side of the neck as well as the deep cerebral veins are scanned by the Doppler ultrasound equipment. The venous flow is examined along the entire length of the neck and also in the brain. The scan documents venous drainage from the brain via the internal jugular and vertebral veins, facial and thyroid veins, internal jugular valve confluence plus any collateral veins that may be present.
How much does the evaluation cost?
The Doppler ultrasound diagnostic screening will take up to 2 hours, and the cost is $550.
Is this evaluation covered by my health insurance?
Testing for CCSVI is not presently covered by Medicare or Medicaid. It is unclear whether or not individual health insurance will cover any of the cost of testing. For these reasons,
payment is due at time of service.