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Arteriovenous malformations, called “AVMs” for short, are clumps of abnormal blood vessels. People can have AVMs in different places in their body.
Cavernous malformations (CMs) are also referred to as cavernous angiomas, cavernous hemangiomas, or cavernomas. They may occur sporadically or in a familial pattern .
Asymptomatic CMs are observed, irrespective of location. Indications for surgical resection of accessible symptomatic cerebral and cerebellar lesions include progressive neurologic deficit, intractable epilepsy, and recurrent hemorrhage.
AVMs that are bleeding or causing symptoms usually need treatment. The different treatments for an AVM include:
●Surgery to remove the AVM
●Radiosurgery – This is not surgery. It involves getting radiation (high doses of X-rays) in the area of the AVM. Over time, the radiation makes the AVM less likely to bleed. This treatment usually takes a few years to work.
●Embolization – This is a procedure done during cerebral angiography. The doctor puts a material into the blood vessel that brings blood to the AVM. The material blocks off the blood vessel. Sometimes this procedure works on its own. Other times, doctors do surgery or radiosurgery after it.
If your AVM is causing seizures, your doctor will treat your seizures with anti-seizure medicines. These medicines can help prevent you from having more seizures.
If your AVM is not bleeding or causing symptoms, your doctor will talk with you about whether it needs to be treated. Not all AVMs need to be treated, especially if they are not bleeding or causing symptoms.
If you have a seizure or severe headache, call your doctor or nurse right away.
If you have symptoms of a stroke, call for an ambulance