Microcystic lymphatic malformation
is one subtype of lymphatic malformation (LM), a congenital
malformation of the lymphatic vessels
in soft tissues
, including the skin.
LM is classified into the macrocystic type, cysts larger than 2 cm with clear margins (previously known as cystic hygromas), and the microcystic type, consisting of cysts smaller than 2 cm, that appear diffuse, and grow without clear borders (previously known as lymphangioma circumscriptum). When the two types concur it is called the combined type. Microcystic lesions are commonly found inside the mouth, throat, and in the tongue, parotid gland
and submandibular gland
. Symptoms include deformity, and problems with breathing and feeding.
The exact cause is unknown but is likely related to a malformation of the lymphatic system
at six to ten weeks of gestation, when some lymphatic tissue fails to communicate with the lymphatic and venous system. Treatment depends upon the clinical presentation, the size of the lesion, the location, and resulting complications. Superficial mucosal microcystic lesions may be treated with laser therapy
Last updated: 7/22/2016