• Cerebral venous outflow resistance and interpretation of cervical plethysmography data with respect to the diagnosis of chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency

      Beggs, Clive B.; Shepherd, Simon J.; Zamboni, P. (2014)
      PURPOSE: To investigate cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) dynamics in the aqueduct of Sylvius (AoS) in chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency (CCSVI)-positive and -negative healthy individuals using cine phase contrast imaging. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Fifty-one healthy individuals (32 CCSVI-negative and 19 age-matched CCSVI-positive subjects) were examined using Doppler sonography (DS). Diagnosis of CCSVI was established if subjects fulfilled >/=2 venous hemodynamic criteria on DS. CSF flow and velocity measures were quantified using a semiautomated method and compared with clinical and routine 3T MRI outcomes. RESULTS: CCSVI was associated with increased CSF pulsatility in the AoS. Net positive CSF flow was 32% greater in the CCSVI-positive group compared with the CCSVI-negative group (P = 0.008). This was accompanied by a 28% increase in the mean aqueductal characteristic signal (ie, the AoS cross-sectional area over the cardiac cycle) in the CCSVI-positive group compared with the CCSVI-negative group (P = 0.021). CONCLUSION: CSF dynamics are altered in CCSVI-positive healthy individuals, as demonstrated by increased pulsatility. This is accompanied by enlargement of the AoS, suggesting that structural changes may be occurring in the brain parenchyma of CCSVI-positive healthy individuals.
    • Changes of cine cerebrospinal fluid dynamics in patients with multiple sclerosis treated with percutaneous transluminal angioplasty: a case-control study

      Zivadinov, R.; Magnano, C.R.; Galeotti, R.; Schirda, C.V.; Menegatti, E.; Weinstock-Guttman, B.; Marr, K.; Bartolomei, I.; Hagemeier, J.; Malagoni, A.M.; et al. (2013)
      The purpose of this article is to investigate characteristics of cine phase contrast-calculated cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) flow and velocity measures in patients with relapsing-remitting (RR) multiple sclerosis (MS) receiving standard medical treatment who had been diagnosed with chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency (CCSVI) and underwent percutaneous transluminal angioplasty (PTA). This case-controlled, magnetic resonance (MR) imaging-blinded study included 15 patients with RR MS who presented with significant stenoses (>/=50% lumen reduction on catheter venography) in the azygous or internal jugular veins. Eight patients underwent PTA in addition to medical therapy immediately following baseline assessments (case group) and seven had delayed PTA after 6 months of medical therapy alone (control group). CSF flow and velocity measures were quantified over 32 phases of the cardiac cycle by a semiautomated method. Outcomes were compared between groups at baseline and at 6 and 12 months of the study by mixed-effect model analysis. At baseline, no significant differences in CSF flow or velocity measures were detected between groups. At month 6, significant improvement in flow (P<.001) and velocity (P = .013) outcomes were detected in the immediate versus the delayed group, and persisted to month 12 (P = .001 and P = .021, respectively). Within-group flow comparisons from baseline to follow-up showed a significant increase in the immediate group (P = .033) but a decrease in the delayed group (P = .024). Altered CSF flow and velocity measures were associated with worsening of clinical and MR outcomes in the delayed group. PTA in patients with MS with CCSVI increased CSF flow and decreased CSF velocity, which are indicative of improved venous parenchyma drainage.
    • Is stair descent in the elderly associated with periods of high centre of mass downward accelerations?

      Buckley, John G.; Cooper, G.; Maganaris, C.N.; Reeves, N.D. (2013-02)
      When descending stairs bodyweight becomes supported on a single limb while the forwards-reaching contralateral limb is lowered in order to make contact with the step below. This is associated with lowering of the centre of mass (CoM), which in order to occur in a controlled manner, requires increased ankle and knee joint torque production relative to that in overground walking. We have previously shown that when descending steps or stairs older people operate at a higher proportion of their maximum eccentric capacity and at, or in excess of the maximum passive reference joint range of motion. This suggests they have reduced and/or altered control over their CoM and we hypothesised that this would be associated with alterations in muscle activity patterns and in the CoM vertical acceleration and velocity profiles during both the lowering and landing phases of stair descent. 15 older (mean age 75 years) and 17 young (mean age 25 years) healthy adults descended a 4-step staircase, leading with the right limb on each stair, during which CoM dynamics and electromyographic activity patterns for key lower-limb muscles were assessed. Maximum voluntary eccentric torque generation ability at the knee and ankle was also assessed. Older participants compared to young participants increased muscle co-contraction relative duration at the knee and ankle of the trailing limb so that the limb was stiffened for longer during descent. As a result older participants contacted the step below with a reduced downwards CoM velocity when compared to young participants. Peak downwards and peak upwards CoM acceleration during the descent and landing phases respectively, were also reduced in older adults compared to those in young participants. In contrast, young participants descended quickly onto the step below but arrested their downward CoM velocity sooner following landing; a strategy that was associated with longer relative duration lead-limb plantar flexor activity, increased peak upwards CoM acceleration, and a reduced landing duration. These results suggest that a reduced ability to generate high eccentric torque at the ankle in the forward reaching limb is a major factor for older participants adopting a cautious movement control strategy when descending stairs. The implications of this CoM control strategy on the incidences of falling on stairs are discussed.
    • Use of single-vision distance spectacles improves landing control during step descent in well-adapted multifocal lens-wearers

      Timmis, Matthew A.; Johnson, Louise; Elliott, David B.; Buckley, John G. (2010)
      PURPOSE: Epidemiologic research has shown that multifocal spectacle wearers (bifocal and progressive addition lenses [PALs]) are more than twice as likely to fall than are nonmultifocal spectacle wearers, with this risk further increasing when negotiating stairs. The present study investigated whether step and stair descent safety is improved by using single-vision distance lenses. METHODS: From a stationary standing position on top of a block, 20 long-term multifocal wearers stepped down (from different block heights) onto a lower level wearing bifocal, progressive addition, or single-vision distance lenses. RESULTS: Use of single-vision distance spectacles led to an increased single-limb support time, a reduced ankle and knee angle and vertical center-of-mass velocity at contact with the lower level, and a reduced ankle angular velocity and vertical center-of-mass velocity during initial landing (P < 0.03). These findings indicate that landing occurred in a more controlled manner when the subjects wore single-vision distance spectacles, rather than tending to "drop" onto the lower level as occurred when wearing bifocals or PALs. CONCLUSIONS: Use of single-vision distance spectacles led to improvements in landing control, consistent with individuals' being more certain regarding the precise height of the lower floor level. This enhanced control was attributed to having a view of the foot, step edge, and immediate floor area that was not blurred, magnified, or doubled and that did not suffer from image jump or peripheral distortions. These findings provide further evidence that use of single-vision distance lenses in everyday locomotion may be advantageous for elderly multifocal wearers who have a high risk of falling.