How are you feeling about the angiogram? I’d say an angiogram is probably necessary in order to understand exactly the physiology of what’s going on with your AVM and I’m pretty sure we have all had at least one angiogram.
I agree it isn’t without risk – it can possibly block an artery temporarily giving you an ischaemic stroke, or tear the artery wall and give you a haemorrhagic stroke, and it can cause some trouble at the insertion site – but I tend to look upon these things as necessary risks in order to find out enough about what’s going on. I assume that the risk of something going wrong is pretty low and therefore it does make sense to take this risk in order to assess how to deal with your AVM and remove the [larger?] risk that that poses to your health.
Honestly, you’ve gone through way more, having already had a stroke. Remember it is only a risk of untoward things happening, not a guarantee of bad things happening.
For myself, I’ve had three angiograms so far – the first when I had an embolisation procedure to glue up my AVM, a second about eight weeks later when we looked to see that everything was ok, and I had a third one a year later to check that everything was still ok. I’m a complete wimp and yet got through each of them fine. I think it is an interesting experience to go through and hopefully the doc will show you pictures that will show how detailed a view of your arteries he or she can see.
I think it’s an important step and commonly the preferred medium for examination of an AVM.
If there’s any way we can help you be more comfortable about it, just say.