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What is acquired arteriovenous (AV) fistula?

An acquired arteriovenous fistula is a condition whereby there is an abnormal channel between an artery and a vein. Normally, blood flows from arteries into capillaries and then into veins. When blood flows directly from an artery into a vein, bypassing the capillaries, an acquired arteriovenous fistula is present.

Our approach

Northwell Health Institute for Neurology and Neurosurgery combines advanced technical knowledge and cutting-edge procedures for diagnosing and treating arteriovenous malformations, ruptured and non-ruptured aneurysms, carotid artery dissection and related conditions. We work very closely with the departments of neurosurgery, interventional neuroradiology, neurology and radiation oncology, as well as other specialists, to ensure an accurate diagnosis and the appropriate treatment for the best outcome.


Symptoms of AV fistula may include:

  • Bulging purplish veins that can be seen through the skin (similar to varicose veins)
  • Decreased blood pressure
  • Fatigue
  • Heart failure
  • Swelling in your legs or arms

How is it diagnosed?

Our team of specialists provides thorough neurological evaluations using the latest diagnostic technology, including CT angiography and 3D angiography.

With unique access to the latest surgical and nonsurgical innovations, our multidisciplinary team of neurologists, neurointensivists, neuroradiologists and endovascular specialists develops customized treatment plans designed specifically for each individual patient.

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