Eleven years ago, yours truly was suffering badly from migraines, so the neurologists finally ordered an MRI of my head. (Folks had always said I needed my head examined)
Voila, they discovered I had a one-inch thick AVM (Arteriovenous Malformation) in the back of my brain, which had probably been growing there since birth. In a nutshell, an AVM is a grouping of tangled veins and arteries which, if bleeding occurred (like an aneurism) could cause death and/or permanent disability.
Doctors insisted I go for further tests and treatment. They said, the likelihood of bursting increases at a rate of three percent per year, and at this point I had just entered my 60s.
Very worrisome, indeed. Three options were: surgery, radiation or gamble doing nothing. I’ve always been a loser at gambling. I won’t even stop at a one-armed bandit in Vegas.
Suzanne and I traveled to Emory University in Atlanta, where the world’s top experts in AVM treatment and surgery were available. My surgeon said it was very serious, but to further pinpoint matters, he ordered a series of tests which involved scans, dyes, arteriograms, and much more.
While being prepped, with hospital gown and tubes hanging from …