Three months ago I went to Google and searched AVM for the first time. Next I typed in AVM Forum and this site popped up. Since then I have spent most of my time on this site and researching doctors and hospitals you have talked about in your posts.
O think you will find the difference in opinions of doctors interesting:
Dr. Frank Hellinger, Orlando did an angiogram he said the avm would require from 5 to 10 embolizations and then surgery would follow, done by another neurosurgeon in the same group. He went on to say it was too large for radio surgery.
When we spoke with the surgeon in the above mentioned group, he we asked him how many avm surgeries he had done. His answer, "A fair number". He was comfortable to do the surgery.
A second opinion was given at Shands Medical Center, Gainsville,Fl.
Dr. Brian Hoh said he could do the surgery but wanted us to talk with the radio surgeon first, to see if he could do gamma knife.
The radiosurgeon, Dr. Friedman said the avm was within range to do radio surgery.He was comfortable to do the gamma.
A last minute opportunity came available to go to Johns Hopkins for an opinion.
Dr. Alexander Coon, of J.H. discouraged treatment due to the location of the avm.It is in or near the motor strip.
Same angiogram was then sent to two of the top surgeons in the United States for review.
Dr. Duke Sampson said he did not recommend surgery and that there was a high chance it would cause permanent disability to do so.
Dr. Robert Spetzler said he did not recommend surgery and that there was a high chance of permanent disability to do so.
THE BEST DOCTORS DID NOT WANT TO DO SURGERY. THOSE LESS EXPERIENCED WERE READY TO GET OUT THERI KNIVES.
At this time my loved one is listening to the advice of those who are highly experienced in doing avm surgeries. He is not having surgery. For him, and people like him, I wish everyone would stop calling an avm a TICKING TIME BOMB. In my opinion inexperienced avm surgeons who want to take a jab at an avm located in a eloquent area of the brain are more dangerous than an avm, itself.
Thanks so much for each one of you who wrote of your ecperiences, in particular the ones who specified exact location of their avm and names of doctors and hospitals. One of the top doctors I spoke with told me there are about ten hospitals in America who have a team of surgeons, neurologists, etc. who work together to successfully treat arms. In this case, I trust the doctors who say they can not do it, more than I trust the doctors who say they can do it.