Embolization has been proposed to reduce the size of the arteriovenous malformation (AVM) nidus in advance of radiosurgical treatment. Embolization followed by radiosurgery for brain AVMs, however, is controversial.We assessed the impact of embolization on nidal size before radiosurgical treatment and evaluated cure rates and complications by using embolization followed by radiosurgery.A retrospective review of our institutional AVM database identified 91 patients treated from 1995 to 2009 with embolization followed by radiosurgery. Pre- and postembolization AVM volumes were measured with angiography, and the modified radiation-based AVM scores (RBAS) also were calculated pre- and postembolization. RBAS determined from pre-embolization volumes were correlated with postradiosurgical obliteration.Median AVM volume declined from 18.8 mL (interquartile range, 10.2-32.2 mL) to 9.9 mL (3.1-19.2 mL) after embolization, P < 0.00003. Median RBAS scores decreased from 2.6 mL (1.8-3.9 mL) to 1.8 mL (1.0-2.8 mL), P < 0.00003. Two of 91 (2.2%) had new fixed deficits after embolization; however, no patient had new disabling deficits (modified Rankin Scale score >2). A total of 71 of 91 (79%) have had >3 years' follow-up, and 40 (56%) had complete obliteration, with 38 (53%) having excellent outcomes (complete obliteration without neurologic decline). Excellent outcome was seen in 90% of patients with modified RBAS score <1, 66% of patients with score 1-1.5, 50% patients with score 1.5-2, and 43% of patients with score >2.These data suggest that embolization of brain AVMs can safely and effectively reduce the treatment volume before radiosurgery. Combined therapy with embolization and radiosurgery does not appear to adversely affect rates of excellent outcome.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.wneu.2016.12.059
View details for Web of Science ID 000397190100066