Dural arteriovenous fistulas masquerading as dural sinus thrombosis

Scott Simon, Tom Yao, Arthur J. Ulm, Benjamin P. Rosenbaum, Robert A. Mericle

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


The authors report dural sinus thrombosis diagnosed in 2 patients based on noninvasive imaging results, which were revealed to be dural arteriovenous fistulas (DAVFs) diagnosed using digital subtraction (DS) angiography. The first patient was a 63-year-old man who presented with headaches. Magnetic resonance venography was performed and suggested dural sinus thrombosis of the left transverse sinus and jugular vein. He was administered warfarin anticoagulation therapy but then suffered multiple intracranial hemorrhages. A DS angiogram was requested for a possible dural sinus thrombectomy, but the DS angiogram revealed a DAVF. The patient underwent serial liquid embolization with complete obliteration of the DAVF. The second patient, an 11-year-old boy, also presented with headaches and was diagnosed with dural sinus thrombosis on MR imaging. A DS angiogram was also requested for a possible thrombectomy and revealed a DAVF. This patient underwent serial liquid embolization and eventual operative resection. These reports emphasize that different venous flow abnormalities can appear similar on noninvasive imaging and that proper diagnosis is critical to avoid contraindicated therapies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)514-517
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of neurosurgery
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2009

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology


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