THE CERVICAL arteriovenous fistula was first described by Beck, McKhann and Belnap1 as a means of increasing the blood supply to the brain. We used their procedure in 33 cases of cerebral palsy and have followed the patients for approximately one and a half years. In this series we found that certain immediate and late complications occurred.
The immediate postoperative course of the average patient was smooth. However, complications peculiar to this type of surgery did occur. Several patients had a transient edema of the eyelids that disappeared without treatment. One patient suffered from a headache in the left parietal area at the site of previous brain surgery. The pain disappeared immediately when the fistula was occluded temporarily. Hoarseness, which was usually due to laryngeal irritation from the intratracheal tube, cleared up on steam inhalations before the patient left the hospital.
If the fistula was made too small, it