Linear vein-based arteriovenous malformations in children

J Neurosurg Pediatr. 2009 Jul;4(1):12-6. doi: 10.3171/2009.1.PEDS08329.


Object: The authors reviewed the experience of a single surgeon in the surgical treatment of arteriovenous malformations (AVMs) in children, with specific attention to the angioarchitectural appearance of these lesions. Methods The authors performed a retrospective review of pediatric cases of AVM treated at a single institution over a 15-year period. Inclusion criteria consisted of pediatric age at time of treatment and resection of a pial AVM. The AVMs were considered linear-based if they had a single, centrally located, dominant vein with a linear configuration rather than the typical central nidus.

Results: Sixty-seven patients, ranging in age from 6 months to 17 years, underwent surgical treatment of an AVM between January 1, 1990, and December 30, 2005. In these patients, 31 AVMs (46%) had a distinct linear configuration that was centered on a dominant draining vein ("vein-based"). These AVMs presented with hemorrhage (61%), incidental findings on imaging (16%), or seizures (13%). In 4 cases, AVM recurrence was noted on angiographic follow-up after postoperative angiography showed no residual lesion. Recurrence was seen at 1 year in 2 cases, and at 3 and 11 years in 1 case each.

Conclusions: A linear vein-based morphological pattern is common in pediatric AVMs and may recapitulate the embryological origins of the cerebral circulation. Surgical treatment in these cases can also be vein-based, through a narrow surgical corridor, which leads to minimal cortical disruption.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Cerebral Angiography*
  • Cerebral Veins / abnormalities*
  • Cerebral Veins / surgery
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Intracranial Arteriovenous Malformations / classification
  • Intracranial Arteriovenous Malformations / complications
  • Intracranial Arteriovenous Malformations / diagnosis*
  • Intracranial Arteriovenous Malformations / surgery*
  • Intracranial Hemorrhages / diagnostic imaging
  • Intracranial Hemorrhages / etiology
  • Intracranial Hemorrhages / surgery
  • Neurosurgical Procedures
  • Recurrence
  • Seizures / diagnostic imaging
  • Seizures / etiology
  • Seizures / surgery
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Vascular Surgical Procedures