Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Hemangiomas and Prematurity

Over the years I've seen discussions on preemie support group sites about hemangiomas. Since this is not a condition that my children have ever dealt with, I never bothered to research it. (I do remember there being a few preemies in the NICU with Paige who also had hemangiomas.)

Recently I noticed that someone found this blog while searching for information on "hemangiomas in preemies". While I found it interesting that there may be a correlation, I never put much thought into it.

Today I was reading a friends blog and there it was again... the topic of hemangiomas (and the use of propranolol). I was surprised to read that they are common in premature infants.

I was even more surprised when I set out to investigate a bit further. There are many journal articles out there on the correlation between prematurity and hemangiomas.

Here's one on the possible association of hemangiomas and ROP...

Here's an article about the possibility of hemangiomas being linked to low birth weight...

I know this information probably comes too late for the person who found my blog while searching for info on hemangiomas and prematurity but I thought I would still put it out there in case anyone else needs it.


Kari said...

Thanks for the information. My daughter was a 27 wk who developed a hemangioma. Your info is very interesting!

Sheila said...

Hi Stacy,

Though like you, I've read many threads on the preemie boards over the years about hemangioma... I never really considered this a big preemie thing (even though as you mention statistically, they are more common in preemies 10 percent vs 25 percent is what I'd always heard) ... in my family, the only kids with a hemangioma were my FT, 7 1/2 pound baby sister (but she was both female and very fair skinned the other "big" group of hemangioma owners, and my youngest brother, over 8 pounds and the only gestation that my mother had any complications with. My Mom had two relatively low birthweight babies (by today's standards) and neither of us had hemangioma.

Whenever I read information like this, I always think back on the Israeli Neo that cared for Kate 19 years ago, he felt strongly that "some" of the morbidity associated with prematurity was due to the fact that we were no longer allowing mother nature to make a late "course correction" when it was revealed that the "blueprints" weren't up to code. He said, 20 years ago, these would have been second trimester losses - sad of course, but perhaps there are reasons we cannot understand (you have to hear it in the Israeli accent).

Not that hemangioma falls into this category of course. But the little things make you really think about the bigger things.

Sheila said...


I don't see a way to delete comments here - but I'm sure you have that ability. Would you kindly remove my previous comment on this thread as I realize it is potentially inflammatory - and I do not wish to create a stressful scene on your blog !

Thanks !

Anonymous said...

Our Katie had a couple of hemangioms. One was large and stuck out. Her surgeon removed it when he did her Nissen. Note to other parents: when a pediatric surgeon thinks he can remove a hemangioma without You do NOT suture them with dissolvable sutures. She now has a scar much larger than the worst hemangioma. I think it needed to be removed because she pulled on it so much that it was bound to be torn off.

Remember that you can have internal as well as external hemangiomas. Also, I wonder about the safety aspect of proprananolol with premature infants and their breathing problems.


Kyrsten said...

Joshua has a large hemangioma on his back, and while it's not always noticable, when it is-- boy, the comments! People are *so* freaked out!

I saw a little girl in a store just as J. was out of the hospital, and she had a large one on her face. 'Started a conversation with her Mom, and it turns out she was a preemie, too. Mom seemed relieved to have someone to talk to; her daughter was beautiful but people usually shied away, apparently... Another potential "cross" for preemies to bear.

Anonymous said...

My son has a good-sized hemangioma on his left wrist (at 19 months, it has greatly faded). He was born at 37 weeks exactly, so early but not quite a preemie. He was already 8 lbs, 2oz though, so definitely not a low birthweight, esp for the gestation.
We were lucky it ended up on his wrist though. I am 23 weeks pregnant with our second son and hoping he will also stay in until at least 37 weeks - I have an irritable uterus.
We also all have very fair skin.

Thurman said...