HHT is an inherited disorder that affects blood vessels. It is characterized by abnormal connections between arteries and veins known as arteriovenous malformations (AVM’s) and telangiectases. AVM’s occur in the brain, spine, liver and lungs. Telangiectases are found in the mucocutaneous surface areas of the gastrointestinal tract, skin and nose.
HHT affects about one in 5,000 people in the United States, though about 90 percent of those who have it are undiagnosed.
Manifestations of HHT include:
- Recurrent epistaxis (nosebleeds)
- AVM’s in solid organs