Resection of Lymphangioma (Cystic Hygroma)


What is it?

A lymphangioma (cystic hygroma) is an abnormal growth that develops in the lymphatic system. Such growths can be found anywhere in the body at any time, but most commonly present as congenital growths affecting the head and neck. These rare tumors are benign and are small enough to not result in major problems. However, large lymphangiomas can be visually unappealing and irritating. While developmental cause of such growth are unknown, lymphangiomas are often present in infants with chromosomal abnormalities.

How to Prepare

Before the resection surgery, patients should speak to a surgeon about allergies to medications and anesthesia. A patient requires comprehensive imaging tests before surgery. Furthermore, a patient should ask his or her doctor about refraining from medications before surgery (such as blood thinners) and beginning specialized diets. Leg and breathing exercises may reduce the possibility of developing blood clots in the lungs and chest, so it is important for patients to learn about these pre-and post-surgical therapy options. The surgeon and his team will give specific instructions and will explain the surgery in detail.

What happens during the process?

Resection for lymphangioma can be done using laparoscopic or open surgery. For either technique, the patient is placed under general anesthesia. Open surgery will

involve a larger incision to give the surgeon access to the abnormal growths. Laparoscopic surgery is performed using one or more small incisions. Long, telescopic tools are then inserted into the incisions, allowing the surgeons to see and operate on the tumors. This procedure may also be used to diagnose conditions in the lymphatic system.

Risks and Complications

* Excessive bleeding and infection

* Damage to surrounding tissue

* Pain, swelling, or numbness at the surgical site

* Drainage from the surgical site

* Recurring growths

* Damage to nerves, muscles and tissues from surgery while removing hygroma


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