Eagles' Patterson has rare brain condition

SPORTS NETWORK

, Last Updated: 5:17 PM ET

PHILADELPHIA - Philadelphia Eagles defensive tackle Mike Patterson has initially been diagnosed with a rare congenital brain condition, according to the team's head trainer.

But Patterson's agent says the player hasn't officially been diagnosed with brain arteriovenous malformation (AVN).

Patterson was hospitalized Wednesday after suffering a seizure during a practice at training camp.

"Media reports are not accurate. Mike has not yet decided on surgery. He has not received an official diagnosis of a brain AVR and is continuing to be evaluated by multiple doctors," Patterson's agent, J.R. Rickert said in a statement.

"Once we know the course of treatment and timetable for recovery, Mike and his wife Bianca will decide how to proceed."

Earlier, trainer Rick Burkholder said AVN, which is a tangle of blood vessels in the skull outside the brain, was probably the reason Patterson collapsed and had a seizure. He said Patterson, at age 27, was outside the age group to first show symptoms of AVN.

"We're pretty sure that what caused the seizure wasn't football related," said Burkholder, who said that a course of treatment won't be established until more tests are administered.

Patterson was expected to leave Lehigh Valley Hospital and return to his home in New Jersey before undergoing further evaluation in the coming days.

He experienced convulsions during practice on Wednesday morning and lost consciousness. The Eagles' training staff responded quickly, and he was taken by ambulance to the hospital.

"It just so happened to be at football practice. It could have happened at home, in the dorms, anywhere," Burkholder said.

Burkholder said Patterson is on medication to prevent another seizure, but would not comment about when or if the player would return to the field.

"I'm not going to speculate whether Mike will return to football, this season or next season," the trainer remarked. "It's foolish to speculate on that."

Patterson, entering his seventh NFL season with the Eagles after being selected by the club with the 31st pick of the 2005 draft out of USC, had a career-low 37 tackles in 15 games last season, including 14 starts, and posted two sacks. He has compiled 297 tackles and 13 sacks in six seasons.


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