Incidental finding of an arteriovenous malformation originating from the diaphragm: Case report and literature review

Cara Gose, Prakash Patel, Alexander Posch, Adam Bowling


Arteriovenous malformations (AVMs) are defined as aberrant linkages between arteries and veins in the absence of a capillary network. This case report will discuss the incidental finding of an AVM likely originating from the diaphragm. A 65-year-old female presents for an umbilical hernia repair. Her past medical history is significant for HTN, type 2 diabetes mellitus, gastroesophageal reflux disease, and class 1 obesity. She has a past surgical history of hysteroscopy in 2020 and laparoscopy in 1996. She has no history of tobacco use, alcohol use, or recreational drug use. She is allergic to contrast. A computed tomography (CT) scan was ordered and incidentally showed a soft tissue mass in the left upper quadrant adjacent to the stomach and diaphragm, possibly a gastrointestinal stromal tumor (GIST) or splenule, in addition to diastasis of the abdominal wall. Biopsies of the esophagus, stomach, and duodenum from the esophagogastroduodenoscopy (EGD) were all benign. A nuclear medicine scan of the liver and spleen found an estimated 2.3 cm soft tissue nodule located between the fundus of the stomach and the left hemidiaphragm that does not demonstrate sulfa colloid uptake and is therefore not consistent with a splenule. This is the only incidence cited of an AVM originating from the diaphragm. We suspect that the origin of this AVM is the inferior phrenic artery. The decision for management for this case was to get a CT scan of the abdomen and chest to trace the path of the AVM and manage with surveillance.

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Case Studies in Surgery  ISSN 2377-7311(Print)  ISSN 2377-732X(Online)

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