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What is Arteriovenous Malformation
An irregular blood vessel network linking arteries and veins known as an arteriovenous malformation (AVM) impairs normal blood flow and oxygen delivery.
The brain receives oxygen-rich blood from the heart through arteries. The oxygen-depleted blood is returned to the heart and lungs through veins.
The surrounding tissues may not receive adequate oxygen when an AVM interferes with this crucial function. Additionally, the abnormally twisted blood arteries that make up the AVM are prone to deterioration and rupture. If the AVM ruptures in the brain, it may result in brain bleeding (hemorrhage), a stroke, or permanent brain damage.
How does Arteriovenous Malformation form
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Arteriovenous Malformation Treatment
It is unclear what causes AVMs. They don't often get passed down via families.
Once identified, a brain AVM may frequently be effectively treated to lower the possibility of problems.
The location of an AVM affects the symptoms it causes. Frequently, after bleeding has started, the first symptoms and indications show up. Signs and symptoms other than bleeding include:
- Decrease of neurological function over time.
- Nausea and diarrhea.
- Consciousness loss.
Additional warning signs and symptoms might be:
- Muscular weakness.
- One area of the body is paralyzed.
- Problems with gait might result from a loss of coordination.
- Difficulties doing things that need planning.
- Weakening of the lower body parts.
- Visual issues, such as losing some of your field of vision, having trouble controlling your eye motions, or having an optic nerve enlargement in some areas.
- Speech or language comprehension issues.
- Unusual feelings including tingling, numbness, or sharp pain.
- Dementia or memory loss.
There may be issues with learning or conduct in kids and teenagers.
Symptoms of one form of AVM known as a vein of Galen defect start to show up at or soon after birth. There is a vein of Galen defect deep into the brain. Examples of a sign are:
- A fluid accumulation in the brain called hydrocephalus that results in an enlarged head.
- Scalp veins that are enlarged.
- Failing to thrive.
- Congestive heart failure.
AVM therapy is based on the location of the abnormality, your symptoms, general health, and the risk of the procedure. An AVM may be periodically imaged in order to check for changes or issues. Other AVMs need to be treated. If an AVM requires therapy, it must be determined, among other things, if the AVM:
- A bleed.
- Causes symptoms besides bleeding.
- At a region of the brain where therapy can be administered without risk.
Medication can assist with symptoms including back pain, headaches, and seizures.
Surgery is the major AVM therapy. If you have a high risk of bleeding, your doctor could advise surgery. The AVM could be entirely removed through surgery. This kind of treatment is often chosen when an AVM can be surgically removed from the affected location without significantly damaging the surrounding brain structures.
In an operation called endovascular embolization, the surgeon inserts a catheter through the arteries to the AVM. After that, a chemical is injected to seal off areas of the AVM to lessen blood flow. Additionally, this might be carried out prior to radiosurgery or brain surgery to assist lower the chance of problems.
Stereotactic radiosurgery is occasionally used to treat AVMs. In order to harm the blood arteries and halt the blood flow to the AVM, this technique employs strong, razor-sharp beams of radiation.
Your physicians and you will assess the potential advantages and disadvantages of treating your AVM.
You might need to see your doctor for routine follow-up appointments after receiving treatment for an AVM. To ensure that the AVM is gone and the abnormality hasn't returned, you might require further imaging examinations. If your AVM is being monitored, you'll also require routine imaging tests and follow-up appointments with your doctor.