Definition: Abnormal formation of blood vessels that shunt arterial blood directly into veins without passing through the CAPILLARIES. They usually are crooked, dilated, and with thick vessel walls. A common type is the congenital arteriovenous fistula. The lack of blood flow and oxygen in the capillaries can lead to tissue damage in the affected areas.
Synonyms (terms occurring on more labels are shown first): arteriovenous malformations, arteriovenous malformation