Histological, immunohistochemical and electron microscopic investigations were carried out in a series of surgical pathology material that was removed from 7 patients. They were harboring cerebral arteriovenous malformations (AVMs) that had been previously treated with Leksell Gamma Knife radiosurgery, and presented subsequent bleeding 10-52 months after treatment. Light microscopic studies revealed a spindle cell proliferation in the connective tissue stroma and in the subendothelial region of the irradiated AVM vessels. The histological, immunohistochemical and ultrastructural characteristics of the spindle cell population in the Leksell Gamma Knife-treated AVMs are similar to those designated as myofibroblasts in wound healing processes and pathological fibromatoses. Considering that similar cell modifications have not been demonstrated in control, nonirradiated AVM specimens, these myofibroblasts might contribute to the shrinking process and final occlusion of AVMs after radiosurgery.