Purpose: Although intracranial dural arteriovenous fistula (DAVF) without retrograde leptomeningeal venous drainage (Borden type I) is reported to have a benign nature, no study has prospectively determined its clinical course. Here, we report a 3-year prospective observational study of Borden type I DAVF. Methods: From April 2013 to March 2016, consecutive patients with DAVF were screened at 13 study institutions. We collected data on baseline characteristics, clinical symptoms, angiography, and neuroimaging. Patients with Borden type I DAVF received conservative care while palliative intervention was considered when the neurological symptoms were intolerable, and were followed at 6, 12, 24, and 36 months after inclusion. Results: During the study period, 110 patients with intracranial DAVF were screened and 28 patients with Borden type I DAVF were prospectively followed. None of the patients had conversion to higher type of Borden classification or intracranial hemorrhage during follow-up. Five patients showed spontaneous improvement or disappearance of neurological symptoms (5/28, 17.9%), and 5 patients showed a spontaneous decrease or disappearance of shunt flow on imaging during follow-up (5/28, 17.9%). Stenosis or occlusion of the draining sinuses on initial angiography was significantly associated with shunt flow reduction during follow-up (80.0% vs 21.7%, p = 0.02). Conclusion: In this 3-year prospective study, patients with Borden type I DAVF showed benign clinical course; none of these patients experienced conversion to higher type of Borden classification or intracranial hemorrhage. The restrictive changes of the draining sinuses at initial diagnosis might be an imaging biomarker for future shunt flow reduction.
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