What is a hemangioma?

Vascular tumors that occur as a result of increased number and volume of blood vessels are called hemangiomas. They are the most common vascular tumors. It can be found on the skin and internal organs such as the liver. Infantile hemangiomas are divided into three as Cherry hemangioma and Congenital hemangiomas. There are also capillary and cavernous hemangiomas.

  • Infantile Hemangioma : It is usually seen in infancy. It is the most common benign tumor of infancy. It is formed by the uncontrolled proliferation of the endothelial layer. It is more common in the mouth, skin, genital areas, and around the anus. They are not cancer. It is more common in female infants and premature babies.

  • Cherry hemangioma : Also called strawberry hemangioma. It is common. It has a small red color and bright structure. It is generally seen in adults. It can grow up to 1-2mm in size. It can be seen as spots at the skin level, as well as raised, dome-shaped lesions on the surface. It is more common after the age of 40. It is most commonly located on the trunk, arms and legs.

  • Capillary Hemangioma : Hemangiomas located on surfaces close to the skin are called. Most hemangiomas are like this.

  • Cavernous Hemangioma : Hemngiomas located deep under the skin are called. The skin may appear normal from the outside, but as it gets closer, it may turn into a blue purple color.

Why does hemangioma occur?

Experts have no idea why hemangioma occurs. However, hemangiomas have been found to be associated with the following conditions:

  • Babies born with low birth weight

  • prematures

  • Caucasian babies

Sometimes, hemangiomas, which are observed to be familial, may also occur spontaneously. Since we do not know the exact cause, we have no chance to prevent hemangiomas.

What are the symptoms of hemangioma?

Hemangiomas on the skin are usually purple, blue or dark red in color. They are usually small but can get very large over time. They appear as red dots after birth. They grow in 2-3 weeks. After they stop growing, they go into the stationary phase. They do not grow any further in this phase. They may disappear on their own or persist over the years.

How is the diagnosis of hemangioma made?

There is no need for any additional diagnostic tests other than visual physical examination. If your doctor notices an abnormality in the hemangioma on your skin, they may order a blood test or a skin biopsy.

An MRI or CT may also be ordered if you have a deep hemangioma.

What happens if the hemangioma is not treated?

These complications are very rare. If the hemangioma has grown rapidly or is too large, it is necessary to be more careful.

  • Bleeding

  • Visual disturbances (if the hemangioma is in the eye)

  • Shortness of breath (a large hemangioma in the throat or nose)

  • Infections that may develop due to bleeding.

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