Ashley Reverses the Effects of Rare Vascular Condition
With Facial Reconstructive Surgery


Ashley Reverses the Effects of Rare Vascular Condition With Facial Reconstructive Surgery

Ashley B. was born with two brain arteriovenous malformations (AVM)—an extremely rare condition of tangled veins and arteries that affects less than one percent of the population. In addition to disrupting blood flow, it had the potential to cause hemorrhage, or a bleed in the brain. A successful neurosurgical procedure helped her overcome the condition, but her recovery wasn’t finished yet. 


Ashley’s AVM caused masses to form between her skull and scalp on the left side of her forehead. It was more than a cosmetic issue, the masses began to sink into her eyelid and pushed her eye inward. 

Ashley searched for a plastic surgeon with the expertise to perform the sensitive procedure. After trying a few options with unsatisfactory results, she found Adam Cohen, M.D. an eyelid and facial plastic surgeon and an independent provider on the medical staff at Swedish Covenant Hospital. 

“He was a plastic surgeon who specialized in surgery of the eyelids, it was absolutely perfect,” said Ashley. 

Ashley’s first surgery fell on New Year’s Eve of 2015. With this single procedure, Dr. Cohen was able to remove all of the tissue built up between her skull and scalp. 

“The nurses at Swedish Covenant Hospital were awesome,” she said. “They really went out of their way to make us feel comfortable. My fiancé wanted to stay the night and they were able to move me into a private room and brought in a pull-out bed for him. They didn’t have to do all of that—everything they do here is high quality.” 

She found out following her discharge that her family had a history with Swedish Covenant Hospital. Her father and grandfather were born on its campus, and her father’s current primary care physician is a part of the medical staff!

Once she had recuperated, Dr. Cohen performed a second, more minor procedure. Within a single hour, Dr. Cohen corrected the differences in symmetry and other abnormalities in her facial structure that had been caused by the masses. 

Ashley couldn’t be happier with the results and the process as a whole. Her left eye is still slightly recessed, but the choice about whether to address this minor piece of the puzzle has been left up to her. 

“Dr. Cohen is really patient and very personable,” she said. “He approaches the problem from all angles, taking everything into account. My opinion means a lot to him.”

Ashley recently graduated from college and is looking forward to her wedding day. After freeing herself from her physical limitations, she’s ready to begin a new life. 
Adam J. Cohen, M.D., is a board-certified ophthalmologist and a part of the medical staff of Swedish Covenant Hospital specializing in oculoplastic and facial plastic reconstructive surgery and disorders and surgery of the tear duct system. His clinical interests include eyelid reconstructive surgery, facial reconstructive surgery and neuro-ophthalmology. He has 12 years of experience. 

To schedule an appointment with Dr. Cohen, please call 847-834-0390.

By David Modica | Published July 26, 2016
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