A case of cavernous dural arteriovenous fistula resulting in intracerebral extravasation during transvenous embolization

Kasumi Araki, Ichiro Nakahara, Waro Taki, Nobuyuki Sakai, Keiko Irie, Fumiaki Isaka, Hisayuki Ohwaki, Haruhiko Kikuchi

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Cortical venous drainage has been described as one of the major risk factors for dural arteriovenous fistula, which may induce venous hypertension leading to venous ischemia or intracerebral hemorrhage. However, it is rather rare to observe cortical venous drainage manifesting in this way in the cavernous sinus region. We report a case of a 55-year-old gentleman with a right cavernous dural arteriovenous fistula, presenting with conjunctival chemosis, exophthalmus and ocular hypertension on the affected side. Magnetic resonance imaging showed a small intracerebral hemorrhage in the right frontal lobe. Cerebral angiography revealed a dural arteriovenous fistula in the right cavernous sinus draining into the right olfactory vein via the uncal vein, as well as into the superior and inferior ophthalmic veins. This unusual cortical venous reflux was thought to be consistent with the intracerebral hemorrhage found on the magnetic resonance imaging. The patient underwent transvenous embolization for the dural arteriovenous fistula using an inferior petrosal sinus approach. Obliteration of the superior and inferior ophthalmic veins was performed first because selective catheterization into the uncal vein was difficult, and the cortical venous reflux through the vein seemed to be slight. However, extravasation of the contrast material occurred in the right frontal lobe after obliteration of the ophthalmic veins during the procedure. The cause of the extravasation was suspected to be the same olfactory vein that had been involved in the previous intracerebral hemorrhage. The obliteration of the dural fistula was continued rapidly, and the fistula disappeared after the embolization. Neurologically, the patient had no noticeable troubles, except for a mild headache. The pretreatment symptoms were alleviated with in several days, and the patient was discharged in a week. We emphasize the following points from this rare case in order to facilitate a safer procedure during transvenous embolization for cavernous dural arteriovenous fistula. It is important to obliterate the cortical venous drainage as early as possible, even if the reflux is small or the catheterization is difficult. Repeated, careful sinography is useful for the evaluation of the drainage pattern at certain stages during the transvenous embolization procedure.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)733-738
Number of pages6
JournalNeurological Surgery
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 01-08-1997
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology


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