About half of those diagnosed with cavernous malformation will eventually undergo brain or spinal surgery. 

Many factors play into surgical decision-making including the location and size of the lesion,  whether it has hemorrhaged, and the experience of the surgeon.  The Alliance to Cure Cavernous Malformation Clinical Care Consensus Guidelines discuss these issues and may help to frame the conversation with your care provider.

In making decisions about surgery, it is always a good idea to consult experts. Alliance to Cure Cavernous Malformation has recognized Centers of Excellence. These Centers of Excellence have expert surgeons who performed hundreds of cavernous malformation surgeries. Around the US and in other countries, there are other university centers with expert neurosurgeons that may be closer to you – you can receive referrals from other patients in our online support groups.

This section provides information on different types of surgery that are now available or in development. Traditionally, cavernous malformation lesions were removed (resected) using open brain surgery, or laminectomy if the lesion was in the spine. Traditional surgery remains the most common intervention.

Now, minimally invasive options may be appropriate for some kinds of lesions. These alternate methods, as well as methods that are still in development, are presented here.

For those who have already made the decision to have surgery, our website offers information you can use to prepare.


Updated 4.16.22