Lymphangioma: What it is and how to treat it in Turkey

Lymphangioma: what it is and how to treat it

Lymphangioma is a benign growth of lymph vessels.
Lymphangioma results from a disorder of the lymphatic vascular system.
Although the disease is very rare, it occurs in a large number of cases, in newborns or at least in the first year after birth.

Lymphangioma is relatively common in the head, neck, or floor of the mouth, and is also referred to as cystic malignancy.
In most cases, the skin cells almost keep their color, and sometimes they tend to be bluish as well.
Lymphomas can vary in size, but they don't usually regress.
There are several ways to treat it in Turkey, including surgery, drug injections or lasers.

Causes of lymphangioma and cystic hygroma

The known cause of lymphangioma is obstruction of the lymphatic system, however, the direct cause of lymphangioma cannot be determined.
Lymphangiomas are thought to develop due to an inherited disorder of the lymphatic vessels.

If the malformation prevents the lymph vessels from merging into the veins, the lymph fluid will not be able to drain and the lymph vessels in the area will expand. A thickening with cavities (cysts) forms inside.

Hemangioma and lymphangioma are similar, except that the hemangioma affects the blood vessels, not the lymph vessels.

In the neck area, a lymphangioma is also called a cystic hygroma. In most cases, lymphangiomas are skin-colored to light.

Lymphangioma can appear anywhere in the body, but it is more common in the head and neck, and in the neck it is called "cystic hygroma."
Illustrative image of a child with a large lymphangioma in his neck (cystic hygroma)

In particular, cystic hygroma often occurs in the context of other genetic disorders such as Down's syndrome (trisomy 21).

Symptoms of lymphangioma

Lymphoma results from a disorder of the lymphatic system.
Lymphangioma and cystic hygroma are both benign tumors.
It is often already present at birth, or is most often noticed at one year of age.
Lymphangioma can develop in different areas of the body. But it is most common in the throat, the bottom of the mouth, the back of the neck or the head.

Three types of lymphangioma can be distinguished:

cystic tumor (Cystic hemangioma) can be found in and around the neck, but also in the armpits or in the middle of the chest cavity (mediastinum).
This condition is characterized by the fact that the enlarged vessels are often attached to each other in a malignant tumor.

tumor vascular cavernous Lymphangioma cavernous, a lymphangioma characterized by the presence of cavities in which bleeding can often appear.
In such a case, the results in the affected area will be darker.
Benign cavernous lymphangioma most often occurs on the face, extremities, or armpits.

tumor vascular capillary lymphatic (peripheral lymphangioma) A small tumor to be discovered. In general it can be observed as a brittle vesicle.
A capillary lymphangioma can be found in the mouth, the genitals, or the groin.

The latter type, this type of tumor is sometimes referred to as Lymphatic gigantismIt often results in an overgrowth of lymphatic vessels.

Lymphangioma affects several things as it can dislodge organs.
It can also lead to a host of other things, as it can narrow the airways and lead to major breathing disorders.
Also, depending on its size, it can be the cause of deformities from an aesthetic point of view.

Lymphangioma may be localized in the eye socket and cause compressive visual symptoms
Illustrative image showing lymphangioma behind the eye

Lymphangioma diagnosis

The children are physically examined by the doctor, after which the results are evaluated.
Where the doctor takes the medical history of the parents (interviewing and examining them).

The most important method of examination is ultrasound.
This method can be used to distinguish between other diseases and also to assess whether there are other important organs in the child's body in the vicinity.
When further examination is required, imaging may be used MRISometimes this may be necessary.

How are lymphangioma and cystic hygroma treated in Turkey?

Treatment depends on the structure and size of the lymphangioma. Surgery is often done.

conservative treatment

Treatment can be carried out with the active substance Picibanil (which is a combination of group A streptococcus with antitumor properties and is used in the treatment of lymphangioma). The active ingredient is injected into the body (in children it is injected under general anesthesia).
The substance provokes an inflammatory reaction within the lymphangioma.
This erases the cavities (abscesses) because the walls stick together and the swelling decreases.
As a rule, treatment with (OK-432) Picibanil should be carried out several times.

Although many of the side effects of OK-432 injection (fever, injection site discomfort, swelling, and fever in patients allergic to penicillin) have been reported, in an actual trial to find out the true symptoms, the side effects of (Picibanil) were limited: Representation of relevant side effects in one case of anemia resolved by transfusion of concentrated red blood cells.

Laser treatment in Turkey

Another possibility to treat lymphangioma or hygroma, but which is less common is laser therapy.
The carbon dioxide laser vaporizes the underlying tissues and closes the lymph channels.
If no energy penetrates laser With sufficient depth in the dermis and subcutaneous tissue, the patient will only achieve short-term symptomatic relief and the condition will recur.

In addition, the energy delivered to the deeper tissues requires large amounts of local anesthetics due to severe pain in the newborn and may require a long recovery period with the possibility of scarring and swelling or prolonged erythema multiforme or post-hyperpigmentation inflammation.

Pulsed dye laser (PDL) diffuses high-energy laser light in ultra-short pulse durations, allowing specific targeting of chromium-bearing hemoglobin in and around vessels without damaging surrounding tissues.


Sclerotherapy involves injecting sclerotic foams, chemical irritants, or high-osmolarity agents into the lymphatic malformations to destroy the affected vessels.

Injectable corticosteroids, tetracycline, 50% dextrose solution, and saline have been used in initial case reports and trials.
treatment can be considered by hardening Sodium tetradecyl sulfate is a successful minimally invasive treatment option for lymphangioma.

An MRI image was taken of a patient with lymphangioma behind his eye, and the image was returned after sclerotherapy in Turkey
MRI before and after sclerotherapy for lymphangioma in Turkey

Lymphangioma surgery

Surgery to remove the lymphangioma may also be performed in which the tumor is surgically removed under general anaesthesia.
Pay attention to the possible complications that can occur during the surgery.

Surgical excision is the most effective treatment, giving the highest chance of cure with a recurrence rate of 17% to 23%. By removing the entire subcutaneous cavities and removing the source of the vesicles.

While surgical removal offers a definitive cure, it also carries significant risks including scarring, hematoma, infection and nerve injury.
Surgery has the lowest recurrence rates, but the highest risk of complications.
However, this may not be possible in some situations when the infestation is widespread. Physicians should discuss treatment goals with patients when designing a treatment plan.

Possible complications of lymphangioma

Lymphomas don't usually resolve on their own. Therefore, effective treatment such as surgery is necessary to get rid of it. After surgery, the tumor can return (relapse), if not all parts of the lymphangioma are removed.

Lymphangioma is a benign tumor, which does not form metastases (sub-tumours i.e. migrating cancer cells).

You can contact us to provide a service of communication with doctors in Turkey to choose the best available treatment methods.

Frequently Asked Questions

Cystic lymphangioma: This is the most common type of lymphangioma and appears as large cyst-like cavities, filled with straw-colored fluid. Cystic lymphangiomas frequently occur with congenital disorders such as Turner syndrome, Down syndrome, and fetal alcohol syndrome.

Cystic lymphangioma in adults is a very rare disease. Its etiology is still unclear, but it is assumed that it is congenital or caused by obstruction and retention of lymph fluid in the developing lymphatic vessels.

If you are planning for treatment in Turkey
you can talk to us here.

If you are planning for treatment in Turkey
you can talk to us here.