Pulmonary arteriovenous fistula (patient information)

Jump to: navigation, search

Editor-In-Chief: C. Michael Gibson, M.S., M.D. [1]

Pulmonary arteriovenous fistula

Overview

What are the symptoms?

What are the causes?

Who is at highest risk?

Diagnosis

When to seek urgent medical care?

Treatment options

Where to find medical care for Pulmonary arteriovenous fistula?

Prevention

What to expect (Outlook/Prognosis)?

Possible complications

Pulmonary arteriovenous fistula On the Web

Ongoing Trials at Clinical Trials.gov

Images of Pulmonary arteriovenous fistula

Videos on Pulmonary arteriovenous fistula

FDA on Pulmonary arteriovenous fistula

CDC on Pulmonary arteriovenous fistula

Pulmonary arteriovenous fistula in the news

Blogs on Pulmonary arteriovenous fistula

Directions to Hospitals Treating Pulmonary arteriovenous fistula

Risk calculators and risk factors for Pulmonary arteriovenous fistula

Overview

Pulmonary arteriovenous fistula is a condition in which an abnormal connection (fistula) develops between an artery and vein in the lungs. As a result, blood passes through the lungs without receiving enough oxygen.

What are the symptoms of Pulmonary arteriovenous fistula?

Many people have no symptoms. When symptoms occur, they can include:

Other possible symptoms include:

What causes Pulmonary arteriovenous fistula?

Pulmonary arteriovenous fistulas are usually the result of a genetic (inherited) disease that causes the blood vessels of the lung to develop abnormally. Fistulas also can be a complication of liver disease.

Patients with Rendu-Osler-Weber disease (ROWD) -- also called hereditary hemorrhagic telangiectasis (HHT) -- often have abnormal blood vessels in many parts of the body.

Who is at highest risk?

Patients with Rendu-Osler-Weber disease (ROWD) -- also called hereditary hemorrhagic telangiectasis (HHT) -- often have abnormal blood vessels in many parts of the body, are at highest risk.

Diagnosis

  • Abnormal blood vessels (telangiectasias) may be seen on the skin or mucus membranes
  • Murmur heard when a stethoscope is placed over the abnormal blood vessel
  • High red blood cell count

Tests include:

When to seek urgent medical care?

Call your health care provider if you often have nosebleeds or difficulty breathing, especially if you also have a history of HHT.

Treatment options

A small number of patients who have no symptoms may not need treatment. For most patients with fistulas, the treatment of choice is to block the fistula during an arteriogram (embolization).

Some patients may need surgery to remove the abnormal vessels and nearby lung tissue.

When arteriovenous fistulas are caused by liver disease, the treatment is a liver transplant.

Where to find medical care for Pulmonary arteriovenous fistula?

Prevention of Pulmonary arteriovenous fistula

Because this condition is often genetic, prevention is not usually possible.

What to expect (Outlook/Prognosis)?

The outlook for patients with HHT is not as good as for those without HHT. For patients with HHT, surgery to remove the abnormal vessels usually has a good outcome, and the condition is not likely to return.

Possible complications

Major complications after treatment for this condition are unusual. Complications may include:

Sources


Linked-in.jpg