Intervention for A randomized trial of unruptured brain arteriovenous malformations (ARUBA) — Eligible patients: An evidence-based review

Christopher S. Hong, Eric Peterson, Dale Ding, Samir Sur, David Hasan, Aaron S. Dumont, Nohra Chalouhi, Pascal Jabbour, Robert M. Starke

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


While intervention for ruptured arteriovenous malformations (AVMs) of the brain is typically warranted, the management of unruptured AVMs remains controversial. Despite numerous retrospective studies, only one randomized controlled trial has been conducted, comparing the role of medical management alone to medical management plus surgical and/or radiosurgical intervention in patients with unruptured AVMs: A Randomized Trial of Unruptured Brain Arteriovenous Malformations (ARUBA). To great controversy, ARUBA concluded that medical management alone was superior to intervention for unruptured AVMs, which was subsequently challenged by various single-institution and multi-center studies analyzing outcomes of ARUBA-eligible patients. This review summarizes studies returned from a PubMed database search querying, ‘ARUBA,’ ‘ARUBA-eligible,’ ‘surgery unruptured AVM,’ and ”radiosurgery unruptured AVM”. The rates of the primary endpoint of symptomatic stroke or death were low among the analyzed studies (0–12.2%, mean 8.0%) and similar to the medically managed arm of ARUBA (10.1%). Likewise, the percentage of patients with impaired functional outcomes (modified Rankin score ≥2) in the reviewed studies was low (5.9%–13.1%; mean: 9.9%) and comparable to the 14.0% observed in the medically management arm of ARUBA. The key findings of ARUBA and subsequent work in its aftermath are overviewed and analyzed for the role of surgery and/or radiosurgery in patients with unruptured AVMs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)133-138
Number of pages6
JournalClinical Neurology and Neurosurgery
StatePublished - Nov 1 2016


  • Arteriovenous malformation
  • Stereotactic radiosurgery
  • Unruptured

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology


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