The perimedullary arteriovenous fistulas are located on the pial surface and are usually supplied by spinal medullary arteries, that is, either by the anterior or posterior spinal arteries, with no intervening nidus between the feeder arteries and the venous drainage. The clinical findings are, more commonly, caused by progressive radiculomedullary ischemic processes secondary to steal vascular mechanism. As the vascular supply to the spinal cord and to the arteriovenous fistulas (AVF) is not shared with one another, the vascular steal phenomenon cannot be implicated in this case's physiopathology. Most probably, the mass effect caused by the giant venous dilatation was the pathophysiological mechanism involved in this lesion.
The authors describe the case of a 6-year-old girl with an intradural ventral arteriovenous fistula, with a giant venous dilatation, fed directly by L2 and L3 radiculomedullary arteries at the conus medullaris. There was no arterial supply to the fistula from the anterior or posterior spinal arteries. Selective spinal angiography showed an arteriovenous fistula supplied directly by two radiculomedullary arteries, with a large draining vein caudally. Interposing the arterial and venous vessels was a giant venous aneurysmal dilatation located ventral to the conus medullaris and extending from L3 to T6. The patient was successfully treated by a surgical approach through a laminotomy from L3 to T11.
The type IV-C spinal arteriovenous malformations or perimedullary AVFs are rare lesions predominately described at the conus medullaris with various types of angio-architecture and controversial treatment.