AVM Treatment Options

In addition to attracting world-class talent, Morton Plant Mease has innovative new treatments for AVMs, such as embolization and catheter embolization (or the “glue” procedure). Both procedures offer fewer side effects and faster recovery times than conventional surgery.

Embolization (blocking the blood flow) is a minimally invasive method of plugging the blood vessels of an AVM. Under X-ray guidance, a small catheter is led from an artery in the leg up to the area being treated. Then, a small amount of medicine is injected to determine if the vessel that feeds the AVM also feeds normal and important portions of the brain. A neurological exam is performed before and after the medicine is injected. Finally, a permanent agent is injected into the AVM, and the catheter is removed. This is repeated for each vessel that feeds the AVM. 

Catheter Embolization (“glue” procedure) can be used to treat AVMs that either cannot be removed surgically or where surgery would involve unacceptable risks to the patient. Sterile glue in a liquid form is injected into AVMs to close off the vessels to control or prevent abnormal bleeding. The glue material helps minimize the risk of serious brain injury.

In addition to these procedures, Morton Plant Mease's neurosciences program offers traditional surgery and other emerging techniques for the treatment of AVMs.

For more information about Morton Plant Hospital's treatment options, please call (727) 461-8635.