Purpose: We investigate patient outcome, risk of hemorrhage, and factors affecting obliteration after LINAC-based radiosurgery (RS) for cerebral arteriovenous malformations (AVM) treated after partial embolization.
Methods and materials: This analysis is based on 50 patients treated after prior embolization. According to the Spetzler-Martin criteria the AVM classification was as follows: 9 patients, Grade I (18%); 19, Grade II (38%); 18, Grade III (36%); and 4, Grade IV (8%). Median RS-based AVM score was 1.41. Median single dose was 18 Gy/ 80% isodose (range, 15-22 Gy) and median AVM volume was 4.0 cc (range, 0.2-22.6 cc). In all, 34 patients (68%) experienced hemorrhage before RS. Median follow-up was 3.1 year (range, 8.5 months to 15 years).
Results: Actuarial complete obliteration rate was 67% after 3 years and 78% after 4 years. The complete obliteration rate was significantly higher in AVM <3 cm (92% vs. 60%, p < 0.01) and in AVM Spetzler-Martin Grade I/II (90% vs. 59%, p < 0,01). Intracranial hemorrhage after RS was seen in 6 patients (12%) after 8.5 months median. Annual bleeding risk was 7.9% after 1 year and 2.2% after 2 years. It was found that AVM diameter > or =3 cm (p < 0.006), AVM volume > or =4 cc (p < 0.01), AVM score > or =1.5 (p < 0.03), and single dose <18 Gy (p < 0.03) were associated with a significant higher bleeding risk.
Conclusions: The rate of obliteration after RS in AVM treated after prior partial embolization depends on size as well as Spetzler-Martin grade. The risk of intracranial hemorrhage is not increased after RS and depends on AVM score, size, and volume, as well as on applied single dose.