Pregnant with an AVM?

I know that this topic has been discussed here before, but I am curious if anyone with an active AVM has been told that it is okay to become pregnant. I plan to ask my doctor at my next appointment, but I’m curious if anyone has done it.

Chari had two kids via natural childbirth BEFORE she knew she had the AVM. Some DRs were surprised it didn’t present then, but it was 6 or so yrs later.

Ron, KS

I had three children before I knew I had an AVM…my bleed happened when my youngest child was 14 months old…with the first 2, I had no problems. With the youngest, I had frequent headaches, which now looking back might have been minor bleeds…be very careful! Good Luck!

I want to get pregnant, also but my doctor said for my to wait, because the meds dialntin an baby medication can cause the baby malformations and also are to strong and my avm can bleed again the pressure of the baby can cause raise my blood pressure., so he changed my meds but know…I’m waiting for radiation treatment he said that for me to wait until 2011…I hope this can help you out…But is always good to ask doctor maybe you can get pregnant…Good luck and god bless…

I have 2 children. My AVM was found right before my youngest turned 7. I was on Dilantin as well and when they were switching my meds they asked me if I planed on having more. Being a single 30 y.o. single woman I couldn’t say yes or no and be 100% about my answer. I am now on Lamictal and from what I said it has one of the lowest increase in risk for birth defects. I hope you ladies get the good news to go ahead and have a baby. They are the best things ever!!!

Thanks everyone for the comments. If my doctor says it’s okay (doubtful, but one can hope) and I do it, I will be sure to keep everyone posted!

Hi Rebecca,
I’m new to the network. I’m also concerned about pregnancy and the risk of a bleed. My avm is inoperable due to size and location, it has never bleed and my only symptom is the occational migraine every 3-4 mo. My dr did discuused that I would be considered a high risk pregnancy and she did not encourage me to become pregnant, but she didn’t tell me no either. There are very few studies, which does not make the decision easier. The studies that are available vary greatly in the size and location of the avm and are more antidotal evidence.

I’m not sure if that helps. I know when I was first diagnosed in 2003, that was my first question. Good luck with your appointment. All the best!

Hi, If it’s true that I was born with mine then it wll depend on what your doctor’s say’s but I have 3 grown children and my AVM was just discovered in April. I am 52 now.

I was trying to get pregnant before I got diagnosed with my AVM. Most of my doctors’ have advised me to wait until my AVM is completely gone, about 2 yrs from now. Though one DR, knowing my age, has said might as well start trying now since - in his own words " your risk is not any higher than before – and it will be a while until this risk comes down."

I happened to be pregnant when I first found out about my AVM. I was 24 years old and 4 months pregnant. I had a seizure. I had never had one in my entire life before that one. I was in denial as I didn’t remember even having one. I just thought I had fainted maybe. I was taken in an ambulance to the hospital. They ran a CT scan and found nothing. I had to start taking epileptic drugs since then. I saw a Neurologist who then sent me to have a MRI. That is when he sent me to a Neurosurgeon who then saw my AVM. He told me I couldn’t do anything until after I had my baby. I was forced to have a Csection because of my AVM. They thought it might rupture if I had it naturally. A week later I had to have an angiogram and found out what size it was. They told me I had to have it removed. 8 months later after I had my daughter I had X-knife surgery (radio knife). That was the beginning of the rest of all I went through. There is so much to say but, I will make it short. That didn’t work had emergency Craniotomy. So what I am telling you is that because of my AVM when I was pregnant at 4 months they told me that is why the symptoms showed up. More blood circulating for the baby and me and the AVM. That made me have a seizure and start taking the med for it. Which in itself is risky. I had a brain AVM. I don’t know if you have problems with other types when pregnant. But, that is why I had to have a Csection also. I know we all deserve a normal life, we can if we inform our selves about the realty that we have or have had an AVM. I hope this helps you to ask your Dr. the right questions and in your decision to have a child. Since I had my AVM removed I had 2 more girls. They are all fine now. The youngest one had a hole in her heart, I think it was from the medicine I take. But, it closed and she is fine now. I just have take her to see a Cardiologist every 2 yrs to check her status. She is fine now she is 2 1/2 yrs old. Other than that the rest of my girls are fine normal children. I do worry for them also as anyone does when they have children. Well good luck with your Dr.! Best wishes!

I discovered my AVM after giving birth (via C-section). I did ask my doctor if I could have more children and he told me that I shouldn’t put my life on hold. That he didn’t see any reason why I couldn’t, but he wouldn’t recomend natural childbirth. I’d have to have another c-section.

Hi, I’m new here and I’m so glad I’ve found the site.

My fiancé and I had just started thinking about a family when her bleed occurred. She’s since had her aneurysm clipped and her AVM has been treated by Gamma Knife. We spoke to our surgeon who told us to get on with our lives. Do I trust him, yes implicitly, but I would demand extra care if we decided to try for a family.

At the end of the day its not my decision, its my fiancés and when she’s decided what she wants to do that’s what we’ll go with.