Microsurgical treatment of perimedullary spinal arteriovenous fistulas

Oertel, Markus F.; Rohde, Veit; Krings, Timo; Mull, Michael; Gilsbach, Joachim M.; Hans, Franz Josef (May 2013). Microsurgical treatment of perimedullary spinal arteriovenous fistulas. In: Deutsche Gesellschaft für Neurochirurgie. 64. Jahrestagung der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Neurochirurgie (DGNC). German Medical Science GMS Publishing House 10.3205/13dgnc271

Objective: Perimedullary arteriovenous fistulas (PMAVF) are exceptional spinal vascular malformations and their best therapeutic management remains controversial. Here the authors present their experience with PMAVF to characterize the clinical, neuroimaging and treatment data of patients operated on PMAVF and to analyse both incidence of complications and resurgery in the microsurgical therapy of PMAVF.

Method: Fifteen patients (13 men, 2 women, mean age 51 years) with PMAVF identified by selective spinal angiography were microsurgically treated at our institution between 1992 and 2006. The presenting symptoms (duration 3 months to 5 years) were consistent with progressive myelopathy (13) or included isolated pain syndrome (2). Lumbar PMAVF location (6) was predominant followed by the sacral (5) and thoracic (4) site including 6 PMAVF of the filum terminale and 2 PMAVF associated with a glomerular AVM and dural arteriovenous fistula, respectively. Microsurgical PMAVF obliteration and postoperative angiography were routinely performed. All patients were available for follow-up evaluation within 6 months postoperatively.

Results: Surgery with complete (12) or almost complete (3) PMAVF occlusion resulted in neurological improvement (10) or stabilization (1), 4 patients deteriorated postoperatively. Whereas no complications occured, a second operation because of residual or recanalized PMAVF was indicated in one case each. Two associated dual spinal vascular malformations could be observed and subsequently obliterated.

Conclusions: Microsurgical occlusion of PMAVF appears to be a secure and adequate therapeutic option that prevents progressive neurological deterioration and results in good outcome in the majority of patients. Complications associated with surgery, recurrences and reoperations are infrequent. Therefore, in the authors experience microsurgery is the preferred therapy to treat PMAVF. Despite the rarity of PMAVF the possibility of the coincidence of associated second vascular malformations should be considered.

Item Type:

Conference or Workshop Item (Abstract)


04 Faculty of Medicine > Department of Head Organs and Neurology (DKNS) > Clinic of Neurosurgery

UniBE Contributor:

Oertel, Markus Florian


600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health


German Medical Science GMS Publishing House




Nicole Söll

Date Deposited:

03 Apr 2014 11:07

Last Modified:

03 Apr 2014 11:07

Publisher DOI:




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