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Doctor insights on: Chiari Malformation Symptoms After Surgery

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I have chiari malformation 1 and I have all the classic symptoms. Yet it is only 3mm. Should I get surgery?

I have chiari malformation 1 and I have all the classic symptoms. Yet it is only 3mm. Should I get surgery?

Neurological: Symptoms guide the decision that surgery is needed, not the length of the lesion. Pressure from the cerebellum on the spinal cord or lower brainstem can cause neurological signs & symptoms. See www. Mayoclinic. Org/diseases-conditions/chiari-malformation/basics/definition/con-20031115. Seek a 2nd neurosurgical opinion if you are hesitant. ...Read more

Dr. James Goodrich
178 Doctors shared insights

Chiari Malformation (Definition)

A congenital condition where the connection between the brain and the ...Read more


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Should a child have surgery for chiari malformation if he has no symptoms?

Should a child have surgery for chiari malformation if he has no symptoms?

Possibly: Typically, asymptomatic chiari type-1 malformations are not recommended to undergo a sub-occipital decompression unless there are other associated findings. In children, if there is associated hydrocephalus, or a cervical region syringomyelia, a sub-occipital decompression may be indicated. This is to prevent future neurological decline. ...Read more

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Is it okay not to have surgery for a chiari malformation if there are no symptoms?

Is it okay not to have surgery for a chiari malformation if there are no symptoms?

Absolutely: A chiari 1 malformation is not a dangerous condition. It is usually found incidentally during the workup for a headache. The only reason to have surgery is to relieve symptoms, and often the symptoms and the chiari are unrelated so surgery doesn't help. If you do not have symptoms, then you absolutely should not have surgery. ...Read more

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Will the surgery to correct a chiari malformation get rid of the symptoms forever?

Will the surgery to correct a chiari malformation get rid of the symptoms forever?

Not necessarily: Depending on the symptoms and type of surgery, this can be very successful. No surgery is guaranteed to reesolve symptoms permanently. ...Read more

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I have chiari malformation and we found this on an mri. Another mri for the spine and no fluid was blocked. My symptom get worse. Do I need surgery?

I have chiari malformation and we found this on an mri. Another mri for the spine and no fluid was blocked. My symptom get worse. Do I need surgery?

Neurosurgery always: Sounds scary. In truth, current minimally invasive techniques have remarkably low risk in the hands of pediatric and adult neurosurgeons. And that's who you need to ask, because the decision is not based on the size, or length, of the Chiari malformation, it's based on symptoms that interfere with a person's daily functioning. Review your MRI's with the neurosurgeon at your first consult. ...Read more

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If I have chiari malformation 1 and my spinal Mri came up negative do I still need surgery? I have symptoms just nothing wrong with my spinal fluid

If I have chiari malformation 1 and my spinal Mri came up negative do I still need surgery? I have symptoms just nothing wrong with my spinal fluid

Neurological: Symptoms guide the decision that surgery is needed. Pressure from the cerebellum on the spinal cord or lower brainstem can cause neurological signs & symptoms. Read all the pages on www. Mayoclinic. Org/diseases-conditions/chiari-malformation/basics/definition/con-20031115. Seek a 2nd pediatric neurosurgical opinion if you are hesitant. ...Read more

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How safe is the surgery to fix a chiari malformation?

How safe is the surgery to fix a chiari malformation?

Moderately risky: Chiari decompression surgery is considered moderate risk surgery. In other words, its not like having your appendix or hernia repaired but its also not like having a complex brain tumor or aneurysm worked on either. The major risks of this surgery are severe (sometime chronic) neck pain, bleeding, infection, and a small risk of spinal fluid leak. The more scary risks (stroke) are very rare. ...Read more

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Arnold chiari malformation, what constitutes a botched surgery?

Arnold chiari malformation, what constitutes a botched surgery?

Chiari surgery: Surgery for a chari malformation is rather straight forward - a "botched" surgery is rare, in some rare cases further surgery might be indicated if the symptoms are not resolved - this assumes there were no complications during the procedure. ...Read more

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How long will it take to recover from surgery for a chiari malformation?

A few weeks: Most are out of the hospital in 1-2 days. You then have to take it easy (no lifting >10 lbs) for about a month. Expect a stiff neck for a few weeks at least. ...Read more

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What will happen to me if I don't have surgery for a chiari malformation?

Hydrocephalus: Fluid will build up in the ventricular system of the brain with a resultant increase in pressure inside the brain/skull. ...Read more

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Is it possible for me to live with a chiari malformation and not have surgery?

Yes: Many people go through life completely unaware they have chiari malformation until they get their head and neck imaged for an unrelated injury. Good to know, but doesn't necessarily require surgery. If you need a spinal tap, then things get a bit murky so put it on your med history anyway. ...Read more

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What happens if you had surgery to correct a chiari malformation, can you join the air force?

What happens if you had surgery to correct a chiari malformation, can you join the air force?

Chiari malformation: It depends on what type of surgery you are going to have (what your true diagnosis is... be careful!) and what job you want at the airforce. Speak with your neurosurgeon and ask details, then call the recruiting folks for the air force and ask them what they think... do not rush into it at age 48... rare to have to have Chiari surgery done at that point.... good luck! ...Read more

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What are the risks of surgery to treat chiari malformation?

What are the risks of surgery to treat chiari malformation?

Many things: Surgery to decompress the herniations can either focus on removing some of the bones to allow more room, or detangling the spinal cord as it leaves the brain (rarely done). This is serious surgery that can result in infections, paralysis, problems breathing, and worse. However neurosurgeons today are incredibly trained and can do amazing things! ...Read more

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How dangerous is surgery for the arnold chiari malformation in a 18-month old?

How dangerous is surgery for the arnold chiari malformation in a 18-month old?

It is: Chiari described different types of developmental defects of the cerebellum. Type 2 is associated with spina bifida, type 3 and type 4 are severe defects. You are probably talking about type 2 associated with spina bifida. It can cause breathing and swallowing problems. Treatment with surgery is controversial. ...Read more

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How dangerous to an 18-month-old is the surgery to fix the arnold-chiari malformation?

How dangerous to an 18-month-old is the surgery to fix the arnold-chiari malformation?

Safe if experienced: As a general rule, such surgeries should be done in major medical centers or in designated childrens hospitals by neurosurgeons who specialize in pediatric neurosurgery. Under those circumstances, the surgeries are as safe as they can be made and almost always better than not repairing the malformation. ...Read more

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I got results on my chiari malformation said 6mm below something and the nuero surgen doesn't want to do surgery why?

Surgery not needed: A chiari 1 malformation is not a dangerous condition, but can cause headaches, numbness, dizziness or unsteadiness. In yours, the cerebellar tonsils lie 6 mm below the foramen magnum (the hole at the base of the skull). This is fairly small and not dangerous so the only reason to have surgery is to relieve symptoms. Often the symptoms and the chiari are unrelated so surgery doesn't help. ...Read more

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I was just diagnosed with a Chiari Malformation and was curious what my restrictions are until surgery and what will it be like AFTER surgery as well.

I was just diagnosed with a Chiari Malformation and was curious what my restrictions are until surgery and what will it be like AFTER surgery as well.

Talk with your surg: Please please please talk with your specific Neurosurgeon nobody knows your situation better and you may require specific instructions in general stop all NSAIDs and avoid stress strain heavy lifting/coughing /valsalva if possible ...Read more

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I have arnold chiari malformation type 1. I recently had corrective surgery. What are the possible side effects from that?

There are risks: With any brain surgery, there are risks or brain or nerve injury, bleeding, infection and even death in rare circumstances. Specific to chiari decompression, neck pain, CSF leak, and pseudomeningocele formation are also risks. ...Read more

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My son was diagnosis with chiari malformation and a 6mm cyst. Is this dangerous at least the cyst part? He's 9 yrs old, should he have any surgery pleasehelp

My son was diagnosis with chiari malformation and a 6mm cyst. Is this dangerous at least the cyst part? He's 9 yrs old, should he have any surgery pleasehelp

Chiari surgery: Based on the age of the child, the presence of a chiari malformation and the cyst I would recommend a consultation with a pediatric neurosurgeon and close follow up as the child reaches the teenage years. ...Read more

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If I had surgery for a chiari malformation in 2002 and they put a mesh patch in place of a piece of skull, could it be causing dystonia?

If I had surgery for a chiari malformation in 2002 and they put a mesh patch in place of a piece of skull, could it be causing dystonia?

Not likely: Dystonia is a complex problem usually caused by either meds, brain pathway problems, or both. The use of mesh in the chiari surgery is very common and never been reported to cause dystonia. It can cause some local headaches but they usually resolve spontaneously. ...Read more

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Last year I had chiari malformation surgery, which helped but recently I've been getting very sick, and also have bad neck pain. Are they related?

Last year I had chiari malformation surgery, which helped but recently I've been getting very sick, and also have bad neck pain. Are they related?

Possible: Probably you should first discuss your issues with the surgeon who did your Chiari surgery. You need to see your physician for an evaluation to be certain there are not other medical problems that may be playing a role here ...Read more

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I had chiari malformation surgery back in Oct, 2014 can this be the cause of me having seizures now? I never had them before the surgery.

Possible: Depending on the extent of the Chiari malformation and the surgery as well as any complications of the surgery, it is possibly related to your seizures. Please seek evaluation with your neurosurgeon as you likely need an MRI. ...Read more

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I did chiari malformation surgery 4 months ago and I feel so dizzy I can not even stand and walk well! I'm suffering. For you kind advice?

I did chiari malformation surgery 4 months ago and I feel so dizzy I can not even stand and walk well! I'm suffering. For you kind advice?

If the dizziness: And difficulty with ambulation are new symptoms that were not present following your surgery, you should certainly seek urgent evaluation. If these symptoms have been present but not improving since your surgery, you should call your neurosurgeon for further workup. ...Read more

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Can decompression surgery for chiari malformation 1 relieve vision problems/issues (like blurry/double vision or seeing flashes) caused by chiari?

Can decompression surgery for chiari malformation 1 relieve vision problems/issues (like blurry/double vision or seeing flashes) caused by chiari?

Depends: The goal of Chiara surgery is to restore the normal pattern of CSF flow & thereby prevent further deterioration of the visual (& balance) symptoms of the ACM malformation. Whether this helps existing symptoms depends on how long those symptoms have been present, the type of surgery contemplated, it's success rate, age, & underlying factors. It's a question to ask the neurologist who knows you best ...Read more

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My 9 yr old son was diagnosis with chiari malformation 1. What does "8 mm of cerebellar tonsillar ectopia with tonsillar deformity" mean? Dr wants surgery

Description of probl: The "bottom" part of the brainstem leaks back into the spinal cord from the skull. This may pressure the brainstem causing damage.Surgery can fix this. The description refers to how much of the brain is misplaced and at risk. ...Read more

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My best friend has chiari malformation, what type treatment would be suggested to help relieve some of the symptoms without surgery.

Yes and no: This is a disorder of spinal fluid circulation so Diamox (acetazolamide) is a medication that reduces cerebrospinal fluid output. If you have symptoms and this is more than just an incidental imaging finding, it is a long shot that this medicine will cure you. Removal of a portion of the back of the skill called suboccipital craniectomy, is a safe and effective procedure. ...Read more