(meaning “moist tumor”) or macrocystic lymphatic malformation, is a fluid-filled sac that result from a blockage in the lymphatic system
A cystic hygroma may be discovered in a fetus during a pregnancy ultrasound (fetal cystic hygroma), present as a birth defect (congenital) in a newborn as a large, soft mass covered by normal skin
, or it may not become evident until later in life.
They are most commonly located in the neck, head, axilla, or chest but can be anywhere in the body. The causes include environmental factors, genetic factors, or unknown factors. About 50% of the fetal cystic hygromas are due to a chromosomal abnormality
such as Turner syndrome
, Down syndrome
or Noonan syndrome
They can be isolated or be associated with other birth defect, as part of a syndrome. Isolated cystic hygroma may be inherited as an autosomal recessive
. In adults they may result from delayed proliferation of the congenital or acquired lymphoid rests following trauma or earlier respiratory infections.
The preferred treatment is the surgical removal of the tumor.
Other treatment may include serial thoracocentesis
, laser surgery and radiation therapy.
Last updated: 2/26/2016