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JOURNAL OF NEUROSURGICAL SCIENCES

A Journal on Neurosurgery


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Journal of Neurosurgical Sciences 2007 December;51(4):177-80

language: English

Endosurgical repair of an iatrogenic facial arteriovenous fistula due to percutaneous trigeminal balloon rhizotomy

Lesley W.S.

The Texas A&M University System Health Science Center College of Medicine Scott & White Memorial Hospital Scott, Sherwood and Brindley Foundation Temple, Texas, USA


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A 56-year-old woman with right-sided trigeminal neuralgia (TN), who underwent technically uneventful percutaneous balloon rhizotomy, developed significant bilateral pulsatile tinnitus on the first post-operative day. Although the patient reported significantly improved neuralgia, auscultation revealed a right facial bruit. Magnetic resonance angiography (MRA) of the face and brain demonstrated prominent right facial and jugular venous vascularity. Catheter angiography confirmed the suspected facial arteriovenous fistula (AVF). A transarterial approach was used to explore the AVF which arose from a laceration of the right internal maxillary artery and which fistulized directly with the pterygoid venous plexus. Endosurgical repair utilizing three non-fibered platinum coils was done under conscious sedation at the same setting as the diagnostic angiogram. Angiographically, the fistula was obliterated, and the patient’s bruit and tinnitus immediately resolved. Follow-up MRA at 3.5 months was normal, and, the patient had no clinical symptoms of recurrent AVF.In conclusion facial AVF can complicate percutaneous trigeminal rhizotomy. Iatrogenic facial AVF can be repaired via an endovascular approach.

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