Liberation Therapy Warning

Liberation Therapy Warning featured image

Here’s the latest on an experimental vein procedure for people with multiple sclerosis. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has issued a warning  about the controversial treatment known as liberation therapy.  The regulator is warning health-care professionals and patients that injuries and death have been associated with this procedure.

The treatment is based on a hypothesis by Italian vascular surgeon Dr. Paolo Zamboni who thinks that narrowed neck veins create a backup of blood that can lead to lesions in the brain and inflammation.

The treatment, which involves opening blocked neck veins with balloons, is not offered in Canada, but patients have travelled around the world to get it, even though it hasn’t been approved by medical bodies. At least two Canadians died after getting the treatment overseas.

Other serious complications reported include:

  • Stents migrating from a vein to another part of the body, including the heart.
  • Injuries to veins.
  • Blood clots in the jugular vein or the brain.

Despite the U.S. announcement, Health Canada officials say they are going ahead with ahead with a proposed clinical trial, which  is in the works.

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