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PURPOSE: Intra-arterial Digital Subtraction Angiography (DSA) is the gold standard technique for radiosurgery target delineation in brain Arterio-Venous Malformations (AVMs). This study aims to evaluate whether a combination of three Magnetic Resonance Angiography sequences (triple-MRA) could be used for delineation of brain AVMs for Gamma Knife Radiosurgery (GKR). METHODS: Fifteen patients undergoing DSA for GKR targeting of brain AVMs also underwent triple-MRA: 4D Arterial Spin Labelling based angiography (ASL-MRA), Contrast-Enhanced Time-Resolved MRA (CE-MRA) and High Definition post-contrast Time-Of-Flight angiography (HD-TOF). The arterial phase of the AVM nidus was delineated on triple-MRA by an interventional neuroradiologist and a consultant neurosurgeon (triple-MRA volume). Triple-MRA volumes were compared to AVM targets delineated by the clinical team for delivery of GKR using the current planning paradigm, i.e., stereotactic DSA and volumetric MRI (DSA volume). Difference in size, degree of inclusion (DI) and concordance index (CcI) between DSA and triple-MRA volumes are reported. RESULTS: AVM target volumes delineated on triple-MRA were on average 9.8% smaller than DSA volumes (95%CI:5.6-13.9%; SD:7.14%; p = .003). DI of DSA volume in triple-MRA volume was on average 73.5% (95%CI:71.2-76; range: 65-80%). The mean percentage of triple-MRA volume not included on DSA volume was 18% (95%CI:14.7-21.3; range: 7-30%). CONCLUSION: The technical feasibility of using triple-MRA for visualisation and delineation of brain AVMs for GKR planning has been demonstrated. Tighter and more precise delineation of AVM target volumes could be achieved by using triple-MRA for radiosurgery targeting. However, further research is required to ascertain the impact this may have in obliteration rates and side effects.

Original publication




Journal article


Br J Neurosurg

Publication Date





217 - 227


Arteriovenous malformations, cerebral angiography, gamma knife stereotactic radiosurgery, magnetic resonance angiography, treatment planning, Angiography, Digital Subtraction, Brain, Humans, Imaging, Three-Dimensional, Intracranial Arteriovenous Malformations, Magnetic Resonance Angiography, Radiosurgery