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Hemangioma

Abnormal build-up of blood vessels in the skin or internal organs is called a Hemangioma. While few occur deeper in the skin, others occur at the surface of the skin. Hemangioma is a benign self-involution tumor, swelling or growth. Hemangioma usually occurs at birth and disappears on its own by age 10. There is no known way to prevent Hemangioma. Hemangioma is derived from the Greek language and means blood vessel tumor. Hemangioma is often misunderstood for bruise or scratch.


Hemangioma Symptoms

Most Hemangioma occurs in the face or neck; sometimes they grow in the liver or larynx. Liver hemangioma is often accompanied by symptoms such as pain in the upper right abdomen, lack of appetite and nausea. But in many cases, it is asymptomatic. Infants can also have more than one hemangioma, varying in size and growth. It is not an inherited condition. Spinal Hemangioma are tumors that are noticed on the mid and lower back regions.


  • A red or reddish-purple sore on the surface of the skin.
  • A huge raised tumor in the blood vessels.
  • In kids, Hemangioma starts out as a flat red mark on the scalp, back of neck or face.

Hemangioma Diagnosis


  • Physical examination to check for presence of build-up of blood vessels
  • CT scan
  • MRI scan

Hemangioma Treatment


  • Propranolol is a beta-blocker receptor that is used to inhibit the growth of the tumor and aid the involution.
  • Superficial Hemangioma or Strawberry Hemangioma does not require any kind of treatment as they disappear on their own. In few cases, laser treatment may be used to remove the small vessels.
  • Hemangiomas in the eyes are treated with laser treatment or steroid injection.
  • Huge Hemangiomas are treated with oral steroids and injections.
  • Laser treatment is also helpful in reducing the size of hemangioma.

Vertebroplasty

Vertebroplasty is a medical procedure that is employed to treat compression fractures in the vertebrae. The procedure involves injecting medical grade bone cement into the vertebral bones that have been damaged or collapsed. This procedure offers support. Osteoporosis is the most common cause for fractured spine bones. Spinal tumors, traumatic injuries and rarely Hemangioma are some of the other causes for vertebral compression fractures (VCF) of the spine. However osteoporosis-led vertebral fracture is the most common clinical situation in which vertebroplasty is used. These fractures cause severe pain and reduce the mobility of the patient. Vertebroplasty is a recently developed image-guided surgical procedure with minimum invasion that promises faster pain relief. Vertebroplasty becomes the best alternative choice when conservative pain management does not provide relief to the patient. It is a simple day-care procedure that not only helps in stabilizing the broken bone but also prevents further compression of the affected vertebral area.


Vertebroplasty Procedure

An MRI scan is performed on the patient prior to the procedure to confirm the fracture. If MRI scan is not recommended for the patient due to any specific medical condition, CT scan is carried out to assess the exact location of the fracture. If the patient is on any kind of medication, it should be informed to the doctor. Anticoagulation medicines or blood thinners have to be stopped at least five days before the surgery. Vertebroplasty is performed under local anesthesia with sedation by an Interventional radiologist or neuroradiologist. He should be well trained in fluoroscopically guided needle placement and should be able to deliver the cement to the exact position skillfully.


The patient is made to lie face down during the procedure. A small hollow point needle is positioned into the crushed bone. The doctor navigates the needle into position using a . Once the needle is in position, bone cement is directly injected into the collapsed bone to secure it. It is a special cement called polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA) that hardens within 10 to 20 minutes and restores the strength and shape of the vertebrae alleviating the pain caused due to compression. Though PMMA cement is the most widely used ingredient to repair vertebral fractures, other new substances such as cortoss (an injectable, non-resorbable, polymer composite that is designed to mimic cortical bone) are being explored in place of PMMA cement as excess polymethylmethacrylate cement can become toxic in the body. More than one fracture can be fixed at the same sitting. Vertebroplasty reduces the pain instantly and helps the patient to return to normal activity in a short period of time. Few hours of rest is recommended soon after the procedure; however the patient can be discharged the same day.


Vertebroplasty is generally a safe procedure. But in rare cases, the cement may leak into adjacent areas leading to complications. If the leaked cement enters the vein and travels to the lungs, it will cause serious pulmonary problems. In worst cases, cement leak may press upon the spinal cord or compress nerves leading to nerve damage. It may also require further surgery to treat the condition. Possibility of infection, allergy and bleeding are some of the other risks associated with Vertebroplasty. Vertebroplasty is not a recommended treatment for herniated disks or arthritis related back pain.



Abdominal MRI

Abdominal MRI is used to detect any abdominal growths. It is a non-invasive procedure that uses powerful magnets and radio waves to produce pictures of the inside of the abdomen. Abdominal MRI can distinguish tumors and other lesions from normal tissues. It also provides information to determine the size, extent and spread of abdominal tumors. For patients who cannot receive iodinated contrast dye and in whom angiography has to be avoided, abdominal MRI is used. Abdominal MRI reveals several of disorders that includes renal vein thrombosis, renal arterial obstruction, kidney enlargement, inflammation of the kidney, acute tubular necrosis, tissue damage in kidneys, pancreatic cancer, adrenal masses, mass of the gall bladder, obstruction in liver, enlarged spleen, distended gall bladder or bile duct, abscess, hemangiomas and other abnormal abdominal conditions.

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Bibliography / Reference

Collection of Pages - Last revised Date: June 24, 2019