Pediatric Cerebral Spetzler-Martin Grade 5 Arteriovenous Malformation


North Florida


North Florida Regional Medical Center

Document Type

Case Report

Publication Date



arteriovenous malformations, avm, pediatric, sm5, spetzler-martin


Cardiovascular Diseases | Congenital, Hereditary, and Neonatal Diseases and Abnormalities


Brain arteriovenous malformations (AVMs) are a type of intracranial high-flow vascular malformation composed of enlarged feeding arteries and draining veins. Without a capillary bed connection, there can be damage to the walls of the arteries and veins, which causes abnormally high blood flow. AVMs are rarely found in children and are thought to expand over time until they become symptomatic. We present an interesting case of a pediatric male who initially presented with seizure-like episodes and was found to have a large frontoparietal Spetzler-Martin (SM) grade 5 AVM after cerebral digital subtraction angiography. Unfortunately, given how much eloquent brain and deep cortical structures were intertwined in the SM5 AVM, risk-benefit analysis favored observation over surgical management. The patient's clinical presentation and imaging findings are described followed by a discussion of the epidemiology, grading system, and treatment of AVMs. After extensive literature review, this clinical entity has been previously reported but is relatively rare in children with prognosis and therapy correlating to the severity of the SM index.

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