Vol 51, No 4 (2017)

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Early outcomes and periprocedural complications of transarterial embolization of brain arteriovenous malformations with Onyx®

Wojciech Poncyljusz1, Marcin Sawicki2, Katarzyna Lubkowska3, Monika Rać4
DOI: 10.1016/j.pjnns.2017.03.006
Neurol Neurochir Pol 2017;51(4):277-285.



Brain arteriovenous malformation (BAVM) is a rare pathology diagnosed mostly in young adults. However, due to its hemorrhagic complications, it constitutes an important clinical problem. Treatment modalities available include endovascular, surgery and radiosurgery.

The aim of the study was to assess the efficacy and safety of endovascular treatment of BAVM with Onyx® by reporting one-center experience.

Material and methods

Between 2006 and 2013, 54 patients with BAVM were embolized with Onyx. The group consisted of 24 males and 30 females, aged 10 to 65 years (mean 42.6±15.4). Clinical manifestations of BAVMs were: hemorrhage in 27 (50.0%), headaches in 12 (22.2%), seizures in 7 (13.0%) and focal neurologic deficits in 2 (3.7%) patients. Six (11.1%) patients were asymptomatic. A majority of BAVMs were of II and III grade in Spetzler-Martin scale (19 and 22 cases respectively).


A total number of 108 endovascular procedures were performed (mean 2.00±0.98 sessions/patient). Complete obliteration of malformation was achieved in 25 (46.3%) patients, mostly with grade II and III BAVMs. In 29 (53.7%) patients, embolization led to a decrease in size of BAVM that made it feasible for other treatment modality. Morbidity and mortality rates were 5.6% and 1.8% respectively. The rate of hemorrhagic complications was 9.3%.


Embolization of BAVM with Onyx® is an effective and safe method of treatment. However, regarding type and consequences of complications, the technique needs further improvement.

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Neurologia i Neurochirurgia Polska