Many within the Philadelphia Eagles organization were disheartened to learn of defensive tackle Mike Patterson's diagnosis of arteriovenous malformation (AVM) following a four-minute seizure at Wednesday's team practice. However, Patterson's agent, J.R. Rickert, disputes the diagnosis, and will reportedly seek further opinions.
"Rick spoke to one doctor who evaluated Mike that's leaning toward the diagnosis of AVM," Rickert told The Associated Press. "Two other doctors are not leaning toward AVM. They haven't ruled it out, but they're not leaning in that direction at all. They're saying it's premature to diagnose him in that capacity.
"We're going to take Mike to a fourth specialist to get an opinion. After we get that opinion, Mike and Bianca will get together and make a decision about the best course of action based on which opinion they want to follow."
In the meantime, according to team trainer Rick Burkholder, the Eagles have turned to doctors at Philadelphia's Thomas Jefferson University Hospital who are able to perform a far less-invasive form of treatment. Termed "endovascular coiling", the procedure is carried out by a surgeon that directs a catheter though the arterial network until it touches the AVM-infected location.
Patterson is currently on medication that is designed to circumvent further seizures, and should be released from the hospital within the week. A timetable for the defensive tackle's return to the Eagles has not yet been confirmed.