Cryoablation for fibro adipose vascular anomaly

What is cryoablation?

Cryoablation, sometimes called cryotherapy, is a minimally-invasive procedure that uses extreme cold to destroy tissue that is painful, diseased or both. It is a fairly novel but promising option for treatment of fibro-adipose vascular anomaly (FAVA) and other painful vascular malformations. FAVA is a complex vascular anomaly, frequently misdiagnosed as a venous malformation or arteriovenous malformation. A specially trained doctor called an interventional radiologist performs cryoablation.

Cryotherapy has been used since the 1960s and is mainly used to treat cardiovascular conditions and cancer. In 2012, a team at Boston Children’s Hospital discovered that this technique can also control the pain of FAVA and improve patients’ quality of life significantly. Since this can be done in a minimally invasive fashion, there are fewer risks and complications and faster recovery.

Our approach to cryoablation

We see patients with FAVA in our Vascular Anomalies Center. Your child’s care team includes a team of experts from three specialties (interventional radiology, orthopedic surgery and hemotology) who analyze each patient’s medical history and symptoms and recommend the best treatment.

Our team is studying cryoablation as a treatment option for patients with other vascular anomalies who do not respond to conventional treatments. Cryoablation may be an option for patients with:

Read more about what to expect before, during and after the procedure.