Background: Giant arteriovenous malformations (AVMs) are congenital lesions, with nidus sizing more than 6 cm. According to Spetzler-Martin scale, grade V AVMs have a nidus larger than 6 cm in diameter, profound venous drainage and are located in eloquent areas.
Method: We report a case of a 39 years old woman, with giant left frontal AVM, grade V Spetzler-Martin, who was admitted for generalized seizures, with onset 32 years ago, refractory to full dose antiepileptic polytherapy, which severely impaired the patient’s quality of life.
Results: The patient underwent surgery and we performed total resection of the AVM. We emphasize on surgical technique, intraoperative difficulties and outcome.
Conclusions: Surgery is the therapy of choice in AVMs, because it provides cure of the lesion, and is the only treatment capable of preventing hemorrhage and controlling seizures. Management in grade V AVMs is challenging, because of their large size, multiple dilated arterial feeders from anterior and posterior circulation and external carotid arteries, high blood flow, vascular steel from the surrounding brain, enlarged draining veins, profound venous drainage and location in eloquent area. Giant AVMs with high flow nidus, causing a great degree of vascular steel in the surrounding brain, with hypoperfusion of normal parenchyma may develop early normal perfusion pressure breakthrough. Total resection in grade V AVMs can be performed with minimal transient morbidity and favorable outcome. Total resection permits control of intractable seizures with reduced dose of antiepileptic therapy.