Thanks to gamma knife treatment, Charles found relief for not one, but two conditions -- an AVM and trigeminal neuralgia.
Read Charles's story
Each arteriovenous malformation (AVM) is a flaw in the body's circulatory system, which is believed to develop while still in the womb or soon after birth. AVMs are not tumors. They are benign nests or tangles of arteries and veins that often have an abnormal pattern of blood flow both inside and outside of the malformation. While AVMs can occur anywhere, they are more common in the brain or spinal cord.
Arteriovenous malformation treatment depends on different factors, including its size, your age, whether you are pregnant and your symptoms. To help you make an informed decision, your physician will discuss with you the potential benefits and risks of treatment as compared to observation alone (no treatment).
AVM treatment options include:
Gamma Knife sends radiation to the problem area and hopes to close the AVM down over time, and our doctors are regarded as some of the top doctors who perform the surgery.
Anticonvulsants may be prescribed for those people with seizures.
Open brain surgery may be performed to remove the bad connection between arteries and veins.
Embolization blocks the blood flow in the AVM to reduce the chance of bleeding.
Most people with an AVM don't exhibit symptoms. Depending on the type of blood flow within and around an AVM, different symptoms can occur. For the estimated 12 percent of those with AVMs who do have symptoms, the severity varies. Patients who have a brain AVM may experience:
For some people with a brain AVM, the first symptoms they experience are those of a stroke. These include:
AVMs can affect anyone, but they're more common in males. Some evidence has also suggested a family history of the condition may increase the risk of being born with it. Symptoms of an AVM usually appear before age 50.
Physical and neurological exams are performed but may not find the problem. Computed tomography (CT) scans of the head, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), cerebral angiogram (contrast dye and X-ray are used to analyze blood flow in the brain), electroencephalogram (EEG, or a measure of the brain's electrical activity) and magnetic resonance angiography (MRA, which looks at blood vessels in the brain) can help physicians obtain a clearer picture.
Complete the contact form below or call The Gamma Knife Center at The Valley Hospital at 201-634-5677 to set up a consultation and receive more information.
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The Valley Hospital is pleased to be one of the first hospitals in the United States to offer the Leksell Gamma Knife Icon — the latest technology for the treatment of benign and malignant brain tumors and neurological conditions in the brain.