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What is neuroendovascular surgery?
Neuroendovascular surgery (NES) at UW Health treats complex brain and spinal cord conditions in both adults and children. This minimally invasive surgery is done from inside the blood vessels. During surgery, the surgeon will thread small catheters (hollow tubes) and small devices through arteries and veins to the affected blood vessel for treatment. Many treatments can be performed entirely inside the vessels with no other treatments necessary.
A wide range of conditions can be diagnosed and/or treated using neuroendovascular surgery and interventional radiology.
Acute ischemic stroke
An acute ischemic stroke happens when blood flow to part of the brain is stopped for a short time. It's also called a mini-stroke, because the symptoms are the same as a stroke but they don't last long or cause lasting damage.
Arteriovenous fistula (AVF)
This is an abnormal connection between an artery and a vein. Blood normally flows from your arteries to your capillaries. And then to your veins. Nutrients and oxygen in your blood travel from your capillaries to the tissues of your body. With an AVF, tissue below the capillaries receive less blood and can lead to complications.
A brain aneurysm is a weak or thin spot on a blood vessel in the brain that balloons out and fills with blood. The bulging aneurysm can put pressure on a nerve or surrounding brain tissue.
This is a narrowing in the large arteries that carry blood to the head, face and brain. The narrowing usually results from atherosclerosis. This is a build-up of plaque on the inside of the arteries that can advance to complete blockage of the artery.
A cerebral vasospasm is caused when the blood vessels in the brain narrow cutting off blood flow. This is most common after a ruptured aneurysm.
Congenital vascular malformations (CVM)
Congenital vascular malformations are a type of birthmark. They are often present at birth and can involve arteries, veins, capillaries, lymphatics, and combinations of these blood vessels. While many of these blood vessel malformations are apparent at birth, others do not show up until the childhood and teenage years. They can include:
Arteriovenous malformation (AVM): An AVM is a tangle of blood vessels that cause multiple irregular connections between the arteries and veins. These malformations most often occur in the spinal cord and brain but can develop anywhere in the body. While the rarest type of malformation, they can cause pain, bleeding and strain on the heart.
Venous malformation (VM): VM’s are the most common type of malformation and often appear as dilated purple veins on the skin. Occasionally they will form blood clots and become swollen and painful.
Lymphatic malformation (LM): LM’s are uncommon vascular malformations that can occur anywhere in the body. They are most common in the head and neck and can appear on the skin as small bumps or as swelling deep under the skins. They will sometimes ooze, become infected, bleed and well.
Frequent or recurring nosebleeds that need medical attention.
Advanced endovascular techniques
Rotational angiography with 3-D reconstruction
Intra-arterial or intravenous digital subtraction angiography for cerebral blood
Color-coded cerebral blood flow imaging
Intracranial angioplasty and stenting
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