Flying Restrictions

Is there any updated information about flying with an untreated AVM? I looked at previous discussions about flying on here and am not sure if I should fly or not. I flew overseas and back as a toddler but become very nauseated and sick with even the slightest elevation change. I have received yeses and noes from my different doctors. I am researching different specialists but they are all out of state. I would have to travel to see any of them. Thanks for any input.

Hi Helena,
I had a craniotomy last year and had to fly for my surgery and after it. I talked to my doctors about it and they suggested me to fly instead of driving. It was going to be more than 20 hours drive; too painful. I suggest you check with your doctor, but as far as I am aware, it's fine. Best!

Thanks for your reply Serendipity. Flying would open up more options for me. I am waiting on some opinions before I contact anyone else.


My daughter had to fly across the country for surgery. She was released from hospital, checked by neurosurgeon and flew home a week later. We’ve had a few other uneventful flights since then as well.

Thanks for the reply Tina.

My son's Neurologist and Neurosurgeon (who is in the top 10 in the world) say it's not an issue. My son DOES though get quite bad motion sickness which has developed over the last couple of years. Take motion sickness tablets or ginger before flying. Hope that helps

Thanks for the reply Christine.

My daughter was born with her AVM and didn't find out about it till she was 17. She has flown probably 10-12 times without any issues. I will admit that once we found out about the AVM I was very scared when she flew. One member on this site talked about being a flight attendant for many years without any problems, until the day that it ruptured mid-flight. She said she should have passed out from the pain, but they gave her oxygen so she felt everything. This isn't my story, so I may not be totally correct, but it stayed in my mind ever since. Still having heard that, I allowed my daughter to fly to Cancun (from Michigan) this past spring and she was fine. Our doctors have never mentioned anything about flight restrictions.

Thanks for the reply AVMmom. I have received both opinions from different doctors. I am considering the following trips: Nashville to Boston and back. Nashville to Baltimore and back and Nashville to Orlando area and back. I would also like to visit my friend and her family in Japan but I think that would be pushing the envelope a bit. I met her in college but she moved back to Japan with her family.

I hope it all goes well (and uneventful) for you! :)

I was wondering this too. I called my doctors and they both said commercial jets are just fine because the cabins are pressurized. They told me to drink a lot of water before the flight to avoid headaches but that has nothing to do with the AVM. Good luck!

hi helena i was diagnosed with my AVM in jan 2014 i had a holiday booked for jul/aug 2014 i asked my neurosurgeon about f;ying and he said it would be fine i had no problems and in nov 2014 i had a craniotmny to remove my AVM. i would say you will be fine but if your worried just check with your doctor tc

Thanks for sharing your experience with flying.