What is Spinal Dural Arteriovenous Fistula?
An improper connection between arteries and veins in the dura, the outer layer of the spinal cord, is known as a Spinal Dural Arteriovenous Fistula (SDAVF) or simply Spinal Arteriovenous Fistula.
Because the blood inside these veins has recently been pushed forcibly from the heart, they are normally under high pressure. The pressure in veins is usually lower. Capillaries are small vessels that join arteries and veins in the body. Capillaries handle the transition from high to low pressure, as well as supplying nutrients from the blood to the surrounding tissues and transporting waste from the tissues to the blood. The capillaries, on the other hand, are absent in an SDAVF. Arteries and veins are joined in a direct manner.
This atypical link causes a slew of issues. Without capillaries, for example, high-pressure arterial blood rushes straight into veins. This surge is too much for the veins to handle. They might expand and inflate and blood flow can become clogged through them. Swelling occurs as a result, putting severe strain on the spinal cord. Furthermore, without capillaries to perform nutrient exchange, tissue surrounding the SDAVF may struggle to get nutrients like oxygen and glucose.
Any of these abnormalities with blood flow, pressure, or nutrition delivery might harm the tissues surrounding the SDAVF. Neurological impairment can result from tissue death in certain regions.
What are the symptoms of Spinal Arteriovenous Fistula?
SDAVF symptoms are often vague, meaning they are comparable to those of a variety of other spinal cord disorders. Back discomfort, numbness, weakness, or “pins and needles” in the legs, clumsiness, trouble walking or climbing stairs, bladder or bowel malfunction, and sexual dysfunction are all possible symptoms. Symptoms might progress slowly and steadily, or they can progress and then plateau for a while before resuming their progression.
How is the diagnosis of Spinal Arteriovenous Fistula done?
An MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) scan is frequently used to detect SDAVFs. Large magnets, radio frequencies, and a computer are used to create detailed images of the spinal cord in this process. However, an MRI does not disclose the exact site of the SDAVF; rather, it reveals effects on the spinal cord, such as swelling and increased blood vessels, that indicate the presence of an SDAVF.
An angiography will be used to pinpoint the exact location of the fistula once the diagnosis of SDAVF has been confirmed by MRI. A radiologist injects a dye into the blood vessels during an angiography. The specifics of the blood flow will subsequently be determined using X-ray or MRI images.
What are the treatments of Spinal Arteriovenous Fistula available?
Most patients respond effectively to treatment. Patients who are not treated may develop progressive spinal cord damage and eventually paralysis. As a result, treatment is advised in most patients.
Endovascular embolization is a treatment that is commonly used to treat SDAVFs. This method does not require surgery and consists of inserting a small catheter, or tube, into the vessels supplying the fistula. When the catheter is in place, it releases a glue-like substance or microscopic particles that can close the fistula. This method, however, may not be beneficial in every situation due to issues with blood flow and artery structure. Surgery may be required in some circumstances. Neurosurgeons can repair the abnormality and restore normal blood flow to the spinal cord using a surgical microscope and incredibly fine equipment.
Dr Nitin Jagdhane is one of the best Neurosurgeons and Endovascular Neuro intervention specialists for doing Spinal dural arteriovenous malformations diagnosis and treatment in Mumbai, India. Get in touch with Dr. Nitin Jagdhane, brain and spine specialist in Mumbai, for the best results for your Spinal dural arteriovenous malformations treatment.