Thursday, August 23, 2012

A First-Hand Report – The Importance of Cerebrospinal Fluid (CSF) Flow in MS, and a Possible Chiropractic Approach to The Treatment of Neurodegenerative Disease

English: Putamen. Part of basal ganglia, which...
Recently, several studies have illuminated the important role that the proper flow of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) through the brain and central nervous system plays in maintaining neurologic health, and also suggest that a disruption of CSF flow may play a part in a number of neurodegenerative diseases, MS included. Like CCSVI, which postulates that impeded bloodflow through the central nervous system plays a role in the development of Multiple Sclerosis, new research hints at a similar role for the flow of cerebrospinal fluid through the CNS.

Cerebrospinal fluid is a clear liquid that flows around the brain and spinal cord, and also fills natural voids in the anatomy of the brain, such as the ventricles and cisterns (the “empty” spaces in the brain as seen on MRI images). CSF serves several purposes. The brain and spinal cord are surrounded by CSF, the fluid in effect holding the brain in a state of suspension so that the weight of the organ is neutralized, keeping the lower part of the brain from suffering damage as a result of the total weight of the brain bearing down on it and pressing against the skull wall. In effect, the brain floats in a pool of CSF, which also acts as a cushion against sudden jolts or blows to the head. In instances where such trauma results in forces too great to be compensated for by the CSF, concussions can occur as a result of the brain crashing against the hard bone of the skull. Additionally, and no less importantly, CSF helps cleanse the brain of metabolic waste products, and also helps regulate the flow of blood through the central nervous system.

Most MS patients are familiar with CSF due to the ever popular and oh so pleasant procedure known as a lumbar puncture, or spinal tap. The stuff that the neuro draws out of your spine after sticking a spike into your back is CSF, which when analyzed can provide several indicators helpful in diagnosing the disease, such as oligoclonal bands, better known as O-bands. O-bands are an indicator of inflammation and immune activity going on within the central nervous system, an environment in which such activities are not welcomed. A vast majority of MS patients (upwards of 90%) have multiple O-bands, and the combination of CSF analysis and multiple lesions on MRI images are major components in completing a diagnosis of Multiple Sclerosis.

A number of recently published studies suggest that a breakdown in the natural flow of CSF can be quite detrimental to the central nervous system, and may be a driving force in the factors that culminate in neurodegenerative disease. One study (click here) discovered a previously unknown series of pathways that CSF follows throughout the central nervous system, providing new insights into the importance of CSF in the brain’s efforts to cleanse itself of potentially toxic metabolic waste products. Another study, done by Doctor Robert Zivadinov and the good people at BNAC, who are also doing extensive research into CCSVI, showed that CSF flow dynamics are altered in the brains of MS patients (click here).

Building upon the work of chiropractor Doctor Michael Flanagan, who has researched and written extensively on the role of CSF flow and neurodegenerative diseases (click here and here), another study, which used a specialized upright MRI device – known as a FONAR MRI – to scan MS patients, linked trauma to the upper neck and bottom of the skull to abnormal CSF flow and the eventual development of MS in study subjects (click here). This research, in turn, led to an ongoing investigation using FONAR MRI imaging in conjunction with a specialized chiropractic technique, known as Atlas Orthogonal, to demonstrate that not only is CSF flow abnormal in MS patients, but that this flow can be corrected by physically manipulating the Atlas bone, the uppermost cervical vertebra in the spinal cord. The bone gets its name because the weight of the entire head rests upon it, just as, in Greek mythology, the weight of the world rests on the shoulders of Atlas. This study is being headed up by chiropractor Doctor Scott Rosa and Doctor Raymond Damadian, the man who actually invented the MRI back in the 1970s.

The graphic below, which can be found at the information packed ATLANTOtec website (click here), nicely illustrates the detrimental impact a misaligned Atlas bone might have on blood vessels and nerves associated with the central nervous system:


In the above depiction, the yellow dot represents the vagus nerve, the blue dot the internal jugular vein, and the red dot the internal carotid artery. As the animation shows, a misaligned Atlas bone can put pressure on all three of these features, which, by appearances, one wouldn't imagine could do much good for the patient. Atlas Orthogonal chiropractors attempt to put the Atlas bone back into alignment using specialized techniques originated by Doctor Roy Sweat, which are taught at the Sweat Institute in Atlanta, Georgia (click here). The Atlas Orthogonal (AO) technique uses gentle pressure applied to the mastoid bone (behind the ear) to realign the Atlas bone, using a specialized table and an AO instrument carefully calibrated to each patient’s needs.

Since January, 2012, I’ve been taking part in the ongoing study being conducted by Doctor Rosa and Doctor Damadian, one of dozens of patients participating in the study. My involvement began with a trip up to Albany, New York, this past January, where I was scanned in an upright FONAR MRI that was outfitted with a prototype coil developed specifically to track CSF flow by Doctor Damadian, and which also utilized proprietary software to direct the scanning. After my initial scan, I was given an AO treatment, and then scanned again. Indeed, the differences between the two scans were rather dramatic. In my pretreatment scan, CSF flow was disrupted and seemed to double back and jet against my spinal cord directly at the spot where my one big lesion is  located. After the AO treatment, the scan showed a much more normal flow of CSF, resulting in a larger amount of fluid separating my brain from my skull base, and a more steady flow of CSF throughout my CNS.

It’s important to note that Doctor Rosa is using his own carefully developed derivation of the original Atlas Orthogonal therapy technique, using FONAR MRI imaging to calculate very specific parameters and angles for treatment (known as “vectors”). Therefore, his approach differs from that done by other AO practitioners, so much so that it is patent pending.

I’ve been receiving weekly follow-up treatment here in New York City by Doctor Scott Bender, who is working closely with Doctor Rosa on the study, and has been trained by Doctor Rosa on these specific techniques. This is not to say that the techniques practiced by other AO chiropractors are not potentially helpful, but the precise methodology Doctor Rosa uses is, at this time, unique. If study results warrant it, Doctor Rosa plans on training many additional practitioners in his approach, but until that time the exact techniques being used in this study are generally unavailable except from the few practitioners that have already been trained under Doctor Rosa’s guidance.

Although Doctor Rosa’s study is still underway, initial results appear to be promising. Some patients are reporting symptomatic improvements, but it is still too early to draw any conclusions. My own experience has thus far not been successful, as I have not (yet) derived any benefit from treatment. I’m a very poor example by which to judge, though, since my condition is extremely atypical, and, as I’ve previously written (click here), has defied all efforts at definitive diagnosis. Additionally, my body seems to have trouble holding the AO adjustment. Some patients report staying in alignment for many weeks after adjustment; I’m generally out of adjustment by the time I go back for my weekly visit to Doctor Bender.

Although provocative, the findings and hypotheses of Doctor Rosa and his associates are sure to be controversial, for many of the same reasons that CCSVI shook things up. Both theories fly in the face of traditional MS dogma, and offer explanations for neurodegenerative disease that differ greatly from those proffered by mainstream neurology. Multiple Sclerosis is nothing if not complicated, and its pathogenesis is almost certainly multifactorial. It’s doubtful that any one theory will prove to be THE key to solving the entire MS puzzle, but, given proper attention, some of these “radical” theories may have the potential to unlock the many mysteries held by MS, even if they do so tangentially. Investigations into the widely accepted autoimmune theory have yet to offer up anything approaching a cure, and the exploration of alternative theories, done responsibly, can only benefit patients as researchers broaden their horizons and begin understand MS as not strictly an immune modulated disease confined to the CNS, but a condition involving yet to be understood degenerative mechanisms with systemic implications as well.

As always, hope is on the horizon, and patience is the key. Unfortunately, for those of us suffering from a progressively crippling disease, patience comes at a very high price.
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  1. This MS I have really has no rewind button. For my children (I always fear for them) and future generations I hold hope, alas for me I think it's too late.

    I'm not trying to be Debbie Downer, just realistic.

    1. I know a person for whom the Atlas Orthogonal or Advanced Orthogonal approach didn't seem to work either. But i have 3 friends who had near miracle improvements. Scott Rosa gets referrals from many MDs including the inventor of the MRI himself, Dr. Raymond Damadian. He has been seeing all sorts of conditions radically benefit from Upper Cervical Chiropractic and has the research to demonstrate. like everything, not everyone improves, but more people are getting results with this than anything in the medical system.

      Watch Dr. Damadian here.
      I watched 4 other videos from the same conference which were equally as interesting. One was a surgeon demonstrating how he pulls the C2 bone into place with pliers and then screws it to C1 and reports amazing results for people with problems like MS and other pathologies. But every talk, no matter how prestigious the doc, was touting Scott Rosa DC, for how well his treatment works.

      A prominent Italian MD, who specializes in MS, named Dr. Mandolesi, along with his colleague Dr. Merceca have now finished a medical study including 500 patients with MS. They claim that Upper Cervical Chiropractic specialist performed the adjustment to atlas and although the 5 year study is over, it will be later in the year before we can see it actually published. What i do know from them is that they claim that, on average, MS patients have a 50% reduction of symptoms and they can prove it. Read more here.,+italy,+dr+drury,+chiropractor&hl=en&sa=X&ei=k1oJU4jwMM2BogSIjILAAQ&ved=0CEQQ6AEwAA#v=snippet&q=dr%20mandolesi%2C%20500&f=false

      So There are some top MD's pushing the studies along. The chiros are all autonomous, working solo in their own office, without the organizational power to put together huge studies like Damadian and Mandolesi are conducting. There clearly is something to structure and proper biomechanics to the spine. For everyone? no, but i know people getting great results, and there's no denying it HAS to be explored by any rational person.

      And, obviously, MS isn't the only thing these docs are helping. When that Cranio-cervical junction is blocked any number of symptoms can arise. There's no denying those pre-post MRIs showing the improved CSF flow, Blood Flow, etc. pretty interesting

  2. Thanks for this update, Marc, and thanks for pioneering this fascinating program. I hope that the therapy begins to have a beneficial effect for you! You are a warrior and I'm so grateful....

  3. Da Italy : Al dottor Rosa, consiglierei di controllare, through mineralogramme dei capelli nuca lo Stato degli oligoelementi catalizzatori, dei Metalli Pesanti, dell'equilibrio TRA Omega3 ed Omega6. Prima tentare di ripristinare la cartilagine e Liquido sinoviale tradi le vertebre e poi, effettuare il riallineamento delle vertebre cervicali, in primis, la vetebra Atlante, a Maggior Durata ALLINEAMENTO o finale. Vieni integratori di oligoelementi consiglierei 3 grammi al Giorno di polvere bianca perlacea di guscio o valvola di conchiglie di ostriche, un Digiuno o con Succhi di Frutta freschi di frutta o verdura, ottime per miglioramento, also del SNC, Integrare con omega9 o acido oleico ( un Digiuno, Durante la giornata, 60-90 grammi, olio di oliva oro giallo denso!, da olive mature, cioe con polpa o epicarpo e mesocarpo di colore viola denso. Nel Commercio Olivenöl Plus, del biochimico italiano, Roberto Crea, S. Diego, California, also se consiglierei di oliva disidratate maturo maturo!), utilizzare sedano, prezzemolo, containing Apigenina, Principio Attivo del Glivec, utilizzato per la leucemia mieloide cronica, cromosoma Philadelfia, con un pò, per sinergia, polvere di Curcuma e Pepe Bianco e / o Peperocino Che amplificano i fitofarmaci. Per USO esterno, Sulle vertebre e nuca, Applicazione di Parte interna di Cladodi, pallido o di fico d'india con Succhi o polpa, di verza o cavoli, per Nutrire e disinfiammare oppure, Applicazione di foglie di Verza, Senza stelo centrale e, sopra, fettine di Agave Americana con sopra, L'altra foglia di verza e fasciate a modo di collare. L'agave Naturale Cortisone CONTIENE.

  4. Marc this is very interesting. As usual I wish you all the best

    1. Google translation: it would ignore, our first cell nuclear human body to body temperature, such as the lack of accumulation of trace minerals, trace elements such catalysts present in SEPIA for BONES! and the same, already metabolized! better than intravenously because, before reaching sangue_mitocondri, are filtered by all organs of the human body: ;
      Originale Italy :, non ignorerei, le nostre prime cellule nucleari organismo umano, a temperatura corporea, come la carenza di accumulo di tracce di minerali, detti Oligoelementi Catalizzatori presenti in OSSA di SEPPIA !! e, gli stessi, già metabolizzati !! meglio di una endovena, perché, prima di giungere in sangue_mitocondri, sono filtrati da tutti gli organi dell'organismo umano : ;

    2. Google translation: and, to enhance the accumulation of Trace Minerals catalysts, in about three months, 90 days, use the emi linen, soaked or gemogliati salad every day in an amount of about 40-50 grams result already good in 30 days, coupled with 2 grams of Gingko Biloba but, by and never leaves YELLOW GREEN! because the green leaves are totally devoid of Ginkgo Flavonoids, present, all in yellow gold leaves! : ; ; ; ; ;

  5. Do they need more people for this study?
    I have PPMS.

  6. This is very interesting as one thing I have read that has been tossed about as an MS cause is a blow to the head, or a fall, or some accident that precedes the MS diagnosis. I had a sledding accidents and broke my collarbone not long before I presented with my first, definite MS symptom (ON). I also had mono when I was a teen. I would not be surprised if it is many things that line up that causes the MS. The whole "spending first 10 years of your life below the 32nd parallel" (some sort of lack of sun - vitamin D?) is also in my past. Fascinating.

  7. Wait. It's ABOVE the 32nd parallel. I was born in St. Louis and spent my first 12 years there. It is ON the 32nd parallel.

  8. I also had the Atlas Orthogonal treatment without success. It was performed twice by a chiropractor set up for it in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. Perhaps like other treatments, my kind of MS (PPMS) is the reason. Best wishes to anyone trying it!


  9. I have an arachnid cyst at T3 ( which is scar tissue filled with fluid) is compressing my cord and Blocking fluid. No body seem to know...ugh! I am possibly going to get it removed. Also I had AO done and it made my neck more crooked. I have been readin alot of people with EDS who have unstable necks. I might need mine fused. Maybe since yours won't hold you could get it surgically fused...who knows.

  10. When an intelligent person puts faith in chiropractors it shows how bad the disease is and how desperate we are

    1. It has nothing to do with faith. Just trying not to put all the apples in the same basket, and since truth is nowhere in sight..

  11. Great article Mark as always.
    Have you considered the multi factual addition of the CPn Bateria?

    Regards, and be well!

  12. I've always thought when no answers to a problem are apparent, one often needs a completely new approach. If the drugs don't work, it doesn't seem crazy to me to try and impact some ting other than the chemical composition of our bodies. I like when people look at approaches like this and CCSVI. It's looking at the same disease, and coming up with other testable theories for the how and why of MS. It's not that I want to bet the house on any one of these treatments working. My hope is always that these intuitive leaps either lead to a solution or lead to new knowledge which helps MS or another disease. The value of leaps forward in understanding can be huge, and it's worth following even if a few of the leaps lead only to falls.

    It's easy to lose sight of potential gains in treating other conditions. Remember, the post-it-note was created by a guy trying to invent a super glue for 3M. When it didn't work, he was using the sticky stuff to hang paper in his office, and he realized the value of what he had come up with was as valuable as the super glue idea for which he had been searching.

  13. I just visited the Atlas website. It has been hacked apparently and isn't functioning. Hope they get that straightened out soon. Thanks for the interesting treatment information.

  14. MS Cure (Anna Macy)August 28, 2012 at 6:13 PM

    Atlas Orthogonal chiropractic treatment would seem to parallel the CCSVI theory of MS as a blood circulation vascular disease. The therapies which enhance blood circulation should also enhance circulation of the cerebrospinal fluid. Chiropractic as well as Osteopathy (as practiced in France) can adjust the actual physical structure of the back and neck. (Acupuncture can't do that alone.) I have recommended neck/back massage, acupuncture, self acupressure, osteopathy, kinesiology, chiropractic, and swimming to enhance blood circulation. All these activities should enhance circulation of the cerebrospinal fluid as well, but if the bones are misaligned they will need physical manipulation to get them in place. If a vein draining the CNS is blocked angioplasty will be required to open it. It is interesting to note how the issues of vascular blood circulation and cerebrospinal fluid circulation converge in Chinese Medical theory. The Bladder meridian begins in the inner eye socket, runs over the head down the neck and down the bands of muscles on the back. The bladder/kidney meridians belong to the water element which rules fluid circulation, cold, north, winter, wet, fear, and ambition. Note how this element describes Northern Protestant Europe where MS is found in greatest numbers.

  15. Thank you for once again posting a very interesting, well written and informative update.
    I read almost all the articles you post and this article once again makes an awful lot of sense.
    The amount of correlating studies that have identified the same area of the body as being problematic for people with MS is more than just a coincidence, although if someone could prove that swimming with dolphins helped cure MS would lead to long queues at sea world.
    I don't know where but I vaguely remember a study or survey about an abnormally high percentage of MS sufferers having had an actual Mastoid ear operation.

    Alex T

  16. Dr. Scott Rosa, D.C. is sharing ground breaking medical breakthroughs that will improve the quality of hundreds of peoples lives. His atlas orthogony treatment is non-invasive, and has helped hundreds of thousands of people. With the help of Dr. Damadian, we are able to see the benefits of this easy treatment to help people who otherwise would never have a decent chance of quality of life.

  17. Has anyone here with RRMS been helped after AO w/ Dr. Rosa,; Is it holding or do you need periodic additional treatments to sustain the benefits that only he can provide? Did you have ccsvi treatment as well? Do you recommend AO w/ Dr. Rosa? Do you still take drugs afterwards? Thank you for any responses...