Arteriovenous malformation - in epicardial fat

Case contributed by Joshua Yip


Staging study for a head and neck malignancy.

Patient Data

Age: 60 years
Gender: Female

Incidental finding of a small arteriovenous malformation, with the nidus located in the epicardial fat on the left side. This is supplied by the left inferior phrenic artery and drains into the inferior left pulmonary vein.

Case Discussion

An arteriovenous malformation (AVM) is an anomalous connection between arteries and veins, which bypasses the capillaries, thus allowing arteriovenous shunting. While known to commonly occur in the central nervous and pulmonary systems they are less common elsewhere. This location in the epicardial fat (supplied by the left inferior phrenic artery and draining into the inferior left pulmonary vein) appears to be rare with no case reports in the literature. This case demonstrates these can occur anywhere in the body.

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