Arteriovenous Malformations

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Neuroscience Institute Swedish Cerebrovascular Center

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An arteriovenous malformation (AVM) is a tangled ball of blood vessels with abnormal connections between arteries and veins. AVMs are rare — affecting less than 0.1 percent of Americans.

An AVM can occur in the brain or spine, and are particularly dangerous in the brain. They can lead to stroke-like symptoms and, in rare cases, the risk of a fatal stroke.

AVMs are found in people of both sexes and all racial and ethnic backgrounds. AVMs form in the fetus during pregnancy, but their cause is unknown. They are not associated with any activity or medication during pregnancy or any complications of birth.


Our renowned specialists and experienced surgeons at the Swedish Cerebrovascular Center are experts in the diagnosis and treatment of brain AVMs.