Arteriovenous malformation of the spinal cord

Arteriovenous malformation (AVM) in the spinal cord is a serious abnormality of the blood vessels. Most of this vascular disease are young people. The most common localization is the thoracic and cervical spine. The main symptom is severe headache.

Артериовенозная мальформация спинного мозга


Description of the disease

Blood rich in oxygen goes from the heart to tissues and organs. Oxygen-rich blood flows through the arteries, then smaller vessels and finally enters the capillaries. The place where oxygen passes into the tissues and cells, is called a capillary bed. There’s the blood «picks up» carbon dioxide and then through the veins back to the heart.

Arteriovenous malformation is a pathological development of the vascular system of the spinal cord, in which arteries connect directly with veins without capillaries. The blood enters the vein through a special tube called a fistula. Because of this, oxygen is not supplied to the tissues, and veins can not cope with increased pressure, whereby they are stretched and can even break. This pathology of the development of vessels can arise in any area of the body and leads to various consequences.

There are the following types of AVM:

  • Cavernoma of the brain – congestion of the capillaries, greatly increased in size, which have no arteries.
  • Venous malformation – a cluster of veins that are not connected with arteries.
  • Capillary teleangiectasia – increased congestion of capillaries with low pressure.
  • Arteriovenous malformation can also occur in different areas of the spinal cord. Depending on the location, allocate these types of arteriovenous malformations in the spine:

  • Intramedullary AVM when the pathology is in the spinal cord.
  • Entrepreneurially AVM – pathology is located on the surface of the spinal cord.
  • Epidural – pathology is located in the epidural space of the spinal cord.
  • Combined AVM – pathology affects all areas of the spinal cord.
  • With combined pathology develops venous hypertension (i.e. high blood pressure in the veins) that can lead to violations and changes in the tissues of the spinal cord.


    Causes and symptoms of AVM

    The exact cause of formation of such vascular malformations of the spinal cord is unknown. It is believed that a breach in the vascular system is a congenital problem, which in future can turn into this kind of pathology. The disease most often manifests in childhood or at a young age.

    Symptoms of malformations can change. They depend on the type of violation and also from the place of its localization. Since the most common location of disease is of the cervical and thoracic spine, the disease manifested severe headaches. Associated symptoms of AVM may include nausea, vomiting, noises or ringing in the ears, seizures. If the violation is in the spine, the disease has these symptoms: severe back pain; tingling in extremities; weakness or numbness of limbs; disruption of the sphincters, which leads to uncontrollable urination and bowel movement; palsy.

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    The disease is paroxysmal in nature. After the attack the man quite quickly recovers. But without proper treatment, the disease will progress, the attacks recur and the symptoms to worsen. Over time, the disease can lead to permanent paralysis of a person. That’s why urgent intervention is required, if you experience any disturbing symptoms.

    Артериовенозная мальформация спинного мозгаIf a vein because of too much pressure ruptures, hemorrhage occurs in the spinal cord. This bleeding may cause a stroke. If Vienna is too full, and stretched, it is the stagnation. It can put pressure on adjacent tissue in the vertebra, preventing the admission into them of oxygen.

    Arteriovenous malformation is dangerous because it can damage the spinal cord.


    Diagnosis and treatment arteriovenous malformations

    To determine the disruption in the development of blood vessels and blood circulation in the spine using non-invasive (without damaging the appearance of the skin) and invasive techniques. To include non-invasive magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) or computed tomography (CT), which allow to obtain precise images of the examined tissues. Invasive method is an angiogram – a procedure where the artery with a catheter, which is pushed into the area of pathological development of blood vessels. Then, in the usual catheter with a special substance, «highlights» the vessels on the images.

    If bleeding in the spine are absent, you may need only supervision by a professional, without any manipulation. In this case, can prescribe drugs for improving blood circulation and prevention of convulsions. If a breach in the vascular system is a threat to the health or life of a person, the treatment is carried out using certain methods.

    Methods The conduct and result
    Surgery. During a tangle of abnormal blood vessels is removed (e.g., by laser or electrocoagulation). The main risk is bleeding and tissue damage in the spine.
    Radiosurgery. Non-invasive method of treatment in which the radiation beam is directed directly on the abnormal cluster of vessels.
    Endovascular therapy. Minimally invasive manipulation in which the person is entered in artery catheters. Catheters are fed directly into the zone of accumulation of blood vessels. Through the catheter are special drugs that block the access of blood to the site of pathology.
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    The presence of AVM is a big risk for the body. This disease causes restricted blood flow, blood flow. It can cause hemorrhage, infarcts of the spinal cord, stroke and even paralysis.

    In the presence of alarm symptoms or manifestations of treatment to the doctor is mandatory.


    Venous stagnation in osteochondrosis

    For the normal functioning of the body needs nourishment of the brain. This is done through the circulation. In the area of the spine to the brain are numerous vessels, which perform this function.

    Osteochondrosis of the cervical spine is a disc disease, in which thinning of cartilage tissue. Osteochondrosis joints are gradually destroyed, flattened and are pinching the muscles and blood vessels. This blocked the blood flow coming from or to the brain.

    If disturbed blood flow in the cervical spine starts venous stasis. The accumulation of venous blood stretches the veins and can cause them to rupture. There are several types of violations of venous outflow: venous disease and venous stasis.

    So, osteochondrosis leads to ‘starvation’ of the brain, which accompany these symptoms:

    • constant headache;
    • the increase in headaches during sharp turns of the neck, the change of weather, or after drinking alcohol;
    • drowsiness and weakness during the day;
    • bags under the eyes;
    • dizziness;
    • loss of consciousness.

    Артериовенозная мальформация спинного мозгаIn addition, when cervical osteochondrosis in place of the destroyed cartilage bone spurs are formed, which further traumatize the surrounding tissue, provoke a breach of the outflow. They also pinch nerve roots, giving the painful symptoms.

    Violation of venous blood outflow in osteochondrosis of the cervical spine occurs due to improper lifestyle of a person. Sedentary work at the computer, in which the muscles of the cervical spine are too tight and the head involuntarily reaches forward – the main cause of poor circulation and blood flow.


    How to treat impaired venous outflow

    To improve the venous outflow in osteochondrosis of the cervical spine, you must adjust your lifestyle. Need to give up unhealthy habits such as eating fast food, Smoking and alcohol intake. Sport is the best relax after a busy day, especially if you are an office worker.

    Of course, if a person works, for example, a loader or a Builder who is actively training in the gym will not benefit. In such cases, the ideal form of physical activity is considered swimming. While in the water and do not exert load on the spine and joints. Water helps to stretch and relax the vertebrae, with involve almost all the muscles in the body to keep muscles toned.

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    Every day you need to perform exercises for the outflow of venous blood in cervical osteochondrosis. Exercises can be performed both at home and in the workplace. The most effective and simple exercises that help improve venous blood outflow in osteochondrosis.

    Артериовенозная мальформация спинного мозга

  • For exercise you need a chair with back support. Sit up straight on a chair and relax your entire body. Tilt your head back and sit in this position for about a minute. Breathe deeply and smoothly. Then take a short break and walk. Run it 2 more times.
  • During this exercise you can stand or sit – at your discretion. Relax and slowly touch chin to the chest. Then slowly straighten your head and reach up as if you are someone raises behind your head. Repeat 8-10 times. Exercise depends on your health.
  • To perform this exercise sit in a chair and relax. Start rotating the neck, imagining that you head draw eight. When performing the exercise do not hold your breath.
  • For this exercise, sit down and put your elbows on the countertop. Cross your fingers and put them on his chin. With the power of push on the toes. Alternate pressing and rest. Repeat up to 10 times. Also you can put hands on the forehead and do 10-12 such pressure on the hands.
  • These exercises will help to strengthen the neck muscles and learn to relax them. In addition, exercise is good for the vertebrae. They prevent the erasing cartilage.

    For the prevention of venous stasis in the spine fit massage.