Sponge (hemangioma)

ULTRASOUND LIVER HEMANGIOMAS (September 2018).

What is a hemangioma?

A sponge of blood, medical hemangioma, is a benign tumor. Your pediatrician may talk about a tumor, but that should not worry you. Tumor only describes the fact that it is a change in the tissue. In a sponge of blood, small skin vessels expand or proliferate like a sponge, hence the name.

Blood sponges are common in newborns, affecting about one to three percent of all infants (Fritsch 2004), with around 30 percent of blood sponges present or visible at birth, with 70 percent occurring between the second and fifth week of life , Girls are five times more likely to be affected than boys (VBF 2006).

Unlike normal mothers and birthmarks, the sponge initially grows and in most cases shrinks again until it disappears. Most other birthmarks remain unchanged.

Only rarely have hemangiomas reached full size at birth. They can continue to grow for up to 18 months, only then can they slowly recede. That sometimes goes very slowly. It can take anywhere from three to ten years until a sponge has completely disappeared (VBF 2006). But it can also be faster. About 80 percent of the blood sponges disappear gradually, either completely or at least partially (Fritsch 2004).

Some hemangiomas are small and unremarkable, but others are very large and disfiguring - mainly because they occur in the face and neck in four out of five cases (VBF 2006). But they can form anywhere where there are blood vessels (ie all over the body, also internally). Even if they disappear by themselves, hemangiomas can leave scars that look ugly for a lifetime (Kim, 2004).

The cause of hemangiomas is unclear (VBF 2006), but presumably they are not genetic (Pittman 2006). You as a parent should not feel guilty about that, you did not do anything wrong. It is important to have an accurate diagnosis as soon as possible in order to start treatment.

What do blood sponges look like?

There are different forms and depending on the stage of development the hemangiomas look different. In infants, there are two main types: Depending on how deeply they go under the skin, a distinction is made between capillary (superficial) and cavernous (deep) forms. In the beginning, they usually appear as a bluish or pale red spot on the skin.

Capillary hemangioma. Capillaries are very small blood vessels, as a result of which the blood sponge formed therefrom is relatively small. It is red and forms on the skin or mucous membrane. They look strawberry-like and in most cases self-form.

Cavernous hemangioma. These sponges are formed in larger blood vessels and, depending on their depth in the skin, are subdivided into cutaneous and subcutaneous hemangiomas and a mixture of the two. The cutaneous hemangioma is reddish and forms a soft knot on the skin, which can also shimmer bluish. It usually forms without treatment. The subcutaneous hemangioma is flatter and shimmering bluish, it is not so sharply defined. This tumor rarely forms on its own (Klinikum Bremen-Mitte, undated).

Are hemangiomas harmless?

In most cases they are not pretty to look at but harmless. The hemangiomas that you do not see can be dangerous. Some do not grow on the skin but on the body, blocking vital organs or obstructing breathing, sight, hearing or even food intake. This also applies to sponges that grow very close to the eye or ears. These sponges should be removed as soon as possible.

The following signs may indicate an internal hemangioma:

  • a yellowish skin color that indicates jaundice
  • blood in the stool
  • Strong breath sounds (whistling or hissing, barking cough) and difficulty breathing
If your child If there are more than three external sponges, then an ultrasound should be taken at the doctor to rule out internal sponges (VBF 2006).

Also, see a doctor if the tumor grows very fast and / or changes shape.

However, the majority of sponges are safe, do not heal or cause discomfort. Sometimes they are sensitive to pressure or may catch fire. But they are disturbing especially from an aesthetic point of view.

How can you treat it?

To treat, an accurate diagnosis should first be made. By ultrasound or rarely a computed tomography, the exact size and depth of the hemangioma can be determined. The perfusion is measured with a vascular Doppler.

It is often simply waited to see if blood sponges that are not life-threatening regress themselves. If this happens in the first year of life, treatment is usually unnecessary, although the risk of scarring remains. But the treatment methods often have negative consequences, so parents should consider whether they should remove the sponge for cosmetic reasons or not. Treatment may be useful if the hemangioma disfigures the face, does not regress, and your child may be teased by others, but that will not be the case in the first two years of life.

Treatment is usually with a laser therapy or by an icing (cryotherapy). The latter, however, is painful, it can cause swelling and leave scars (Klinikum Bremen-Mitte, undated). In some cases, the tumor is removed surgically. Irradiation is rarely done today because the damage caused by the treatment is too severe (Fritsch 2004).

Large capillary hemangiomas can also be treated with drugs, such as steroids (Fritsch 2004).

Depending on the size of the hemangioma, treatment may take one to several sessions. After each treatment of a spongy sponge, they should have the site checked regularly by the doctor.

What can I do?

You can not prevent the blood sponges and you can not do anything yourself to prevent them from growing or to speed up the disappearance. You can try one of the above treatments, but if you have opted for laser or icing therapy then you can only wait. Remember: As long as the sponge does not affect your baby's hearing or vision, it is completely safe and does not cause any pain. However, watch the tumor very closely and go to the doctor if it grows quickly and does not regress even after several months.

As your child grows older, at some point, he'll wonder about the tumor on his face and maybe you'll have to explain to him what it's all about. A very nice child-friendly explanation provided Blutschwaemmchen. info: ""God gave you a peck.""

Quellen

Fritsch, P.: ""Dermatology and Venereology"", Springer 2004.

Haggstrom AN, Drolet BA, Baselga E, et al. ""Prospective study of infantile hemangiomas: clinical characteristics predicting complications and treatment"". Pediatrics 118 (3), September 2006, pages 882-7, Read Online [as of December 2008].

Kim HJ, Colombo M, Peace IJ. ""Ulcerated hemangiomas: clinical characteristics and response to therapy."" J Am Acad Dermatol. 2001; 44, pages 962 -972

Klinikum Bremen-Mitte, undated. Health Nord, Medical Guide, undated. ""Blood Sponge (Hemangioma)"", PDF file [47 kb] [as of December 2008]. Pittman 2006, Pittman KM, Losken HW, Kleinman ME, et al: ""No Evidence for Maternal-Fetal Microchimerism in Infantile Hemangioma: A Molecular Genetic Investigation"". Journal of Investigative Dermatology (2006) 126, pp. 2533-2538. Published online on August 17, 2006 [as of December 2008].

VBF 2006. Linda Rozell-Shannon, Glenda N. Ethington: ""Facts about Vascular Birthmarks and Tumors,"" Vascular Birthmark Foundation. Undated. PDF file [62 kb] [as of December 2008].

Show sources Hide sources

Popular Posts

Recommended, 2018

Boy names with O - most popular first names with O
Pregnancy

Boy names with O - most popular first names with O

are you looking for a name for your unborn child and you know it's going to be a boy? Or you want to be surprised and are looking for a girl and a boy's name? Maybe you are just a fan of boy names with O? Then take a look at our list of most popular first names for boys starting with the letter O. Of course
Read More
Premature labor and premature birth
Pregnancy

Premature labor and premature birth

What is premature birth? If you've made the 37th week of pregnancy, then your baby is ""ready"" for delivery. Babies who are born before the end of the 37th week of pregnancy are considered to be immature. Most preemies are born after the 32nd week (HES online 2012a) and have a good chance of growing up healthy.
Read More
Buy a Tricycle - Tips for Parents
Toddler

Buy a Tricycle - Tips for Parents

A children's tricycle is - considering the development of the skills of your child - virtually the link between ride-on car and bike. Tricycles are suitable for children between one and four years. A tricycle encourages motor skills and places more coordination requirements than a push-car. Your child needs strength to pedal
Read More
Your little chef
Toddler

Your little chef

Could your child be the next Sarah Wiener be? Promote your child's culinary skills in a fantasy kitchen. Good for this age: 22 months (but younger or older kids will love it too!) Good for developing the following skills: Imagination, Fine and Gross Motor, Imitation You Need: A few pots
Read More
Walking epidural
Pregnancy

Walking epidural

What is a Walking Epidural? This method, which is widely used mainly in the USA, is practically a standardized low-dose epidural anesthetic. The pain is very well alleviated, but you keep some feeling in your legs. All Epidural Anesthesia Hospitals can also offer Walking Epidural. Before you can leave the bed and walk around with your epidural anesthetic
Read More
What is a reboarder and what are its benefits?
Baby

What is a reboarder and what are its benefits?

A Reboarder is a Car Seat, which is installed so that your child is sitting in the direction of travel when driving. This reversing duty is currently in Germany for children up to a weight of 9 kg. That is why baby bowls can usually only be installed backwards. For a baby or toddler, rear-facing driving is the safest way to travel because
Read More
Iron: so good for your blood during pregnancy
Pregnancy

Iron: so good for your blood during pregnancy

Why do I need iron? Iron is important for the formation of hemoglobin, the protein in red blood cells that transports oxygen to the other cells. It is also an important component of myoglobin (a protein that helps oxygenate your muscles), collagen (a protein in the bones, cartilage and other connective tissue) and many enzymes.
Read More
Buying a mattress for the baby bed
Baby

Buying a mattress for the baby bed

There is a wide selection of mattresses for baby cots. You can choose between foam, coconut or latex. But which mattress is the best and safest for your baby? In fact, The Foundation for the Study of Infant Deaths says it does not matter what kind of mattress you use, as long as it's firm and not soft
Read More