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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Spinal Arteriovenous Fistula, A Manifestation of Hereditary Hemorrhagic Telangiectasia: A Case Report

  • Author(s): Spangler, Jodi
  • Watsjold, Bjorn
  • Ilgen, Jonathan S.
  • et al.
Creative Commons 'BY' version 4.0 license

Introduction: Hereditary hemorrhagic telangiectasia (HHT) is an autosomal dominant disorder characterized by arteriovenous malformations (AVM). HHT can have neurological manifestations.

Case Report: A 32-year-old woman with a history of HHT presented to the emergency department with acute partial paralysis of the right leg, urinary retention, and right-sided back and hip pain. Magnetic resonance imaging of the spine demonstrated multiple, dilated blood vessels along the cervical spine, diffuse AVMs in the lumbar and thoracic spine, and a new arteriovenous fistula at the twelfth thoracic (T12) vertebral level. Her symptoms improved after endovascular embolization of the fistula.

Conclusion: Spinal AVMs are thought to be more prevalent in patients with HHT. Given the high morbidity of arteriovenous fistulas, early recognition and intervention are critical.

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