AVM Survivors Network

Any advise for a first time mom giving birth in 4 weeks with knee AVM?


Hello everybody. There doesn’t seem to be a lot of information regarding having an extremity AVM and possible complications during birth (excluding the obvious blood clots). I’m 36 weeks pregnant and have been doing ok so far in regards to the AVM. My AVM is in my right knee. My knee and thigh are usually swollen but during the pregnancy my lower leg and ankle/foot have been extremely swollen as well (not my left leg tho). My dr was nervous about this and sent me to the ER to check for a blood clot. Thankfully I did not have one. I have pain in my right leg and can’t put pressure on it (this has been normal since I was a child). My concern is what do I have to watch out for when I give birth? Are there more possible complications other than blood clots (this i’m super nervous about). Do I have to worry about anything with the baby? I’m sorry about the questions but I haven’t been able to find any info on this with extremity AVMs and any help will be greatly appreciated!!

Thank you!



I don’t know much about this but from what I’ve read, the main concern is blood pressure doing damage to your AVM and I get the impression that that is about as much of an issue during (later) pregnancy as during labour. So the fact that you’ve got as far as you have sounds good to me (but I really do not know).

What strikes me is that you face big effort during delivery unless you’re having a planned section. Has your gynaecologist suggested you deliver normally or have a section? I don’t know when it would be important to avoid the stresses and strains of delivery but it may be worth the conversation.

I would think if delivering normally, then protecting your AVM with compression hosiery may be appropriate. Again, I’d take advice.

Hope these thoughts help. And I hope it all goes absolutely brilliantly! It’s an amazing thing to become a parent and I’d say one of life’s greatest adventures.

Very best wishes



Hi Steph,
I’m a mom of 2 with a low flow VM in might right calf. Just like you my main issues are blood clots, swelling, pain, and blood pressure. I had both children vaginally, we watched by blood pressure like a hawk both before and during labor. I wore compression during labor and after with my first. With my first I was induced for a different reason but I had edema post labor due to the pitocin. It caused serious pain in my VM. Luckily I didn’t feel like moving and so I was fine putting my feet WAY up and waiting it out. It passed without incident and really isn’t all that uncommon.
As with any pregnancy blood clots, and blood pressure are monitored closely. As with anyone you will need help after birth to move. Though you might have a bit more pain and swelling than the average Mom.
My biggest gripe is that my VM grew both times during pregnancy. It was worth it to me to get embolization the same year in both cases (that and I reached my out of pocket max so why not). There is always the normal things your AVM causes that might come up in being a parent, but that is no different than any other health issue. My children have seen me in pain more than most Moms, and they’ve both lived with me through surgeries, crutches, compression stockings, iceing and elevating. I don’t think they really understand the difference yet at 2.5 and 5 years. Just that Mommy’s leg hurts sometimes. You might want to join the Extremity AVM facebook group if you are interested. There is quite an active group on there.
Best of luck on a wonderful pregnancy and beautiful baby!!


Steph4 how’d it go? Do you have a beautiful baby? Were there any concerns? Any problems your AVM caused that wouldn’t have been normal with childbirth? I’d be interested to hear other mom’s experiences.