||[Feb. 7th, 2008|04:17 pm]
Haemangioma is a fancy word for a birthmark. They're congenital benign skin lesions consisting of dense, usually elevated, masses of dilated blood vessels. Most of the time, they're completely harmless, and a fair number of them vanish before you hit puberty. Haemangiomas are by far the most common childhood tumour, occurring in approximately ten percent of Caucasians, altho less prevalent in other races. Females are three to five times more likely to have them, which adds weight to the idea that oestrogen signalling is to blame. 'Strawberry Marks' or capillary haemangiomas are vivid superficial lesions - cavernous haemangiomas are deep bluish swelling. Sometimes they can be both. Approximately eighty percent are located on the face and neck, with the next most prevalent location being the liver.
Although haemangiomas are benign, some serious complications can occur. They may break down on the surface to form ulcers - if deep, significant bleeding may occur. They can also grow over the larynx, or the eye, or into bone, and if particularly large can cause heart failure as your body tries to inflate large masses of useless tissue.
Or you can just live with one for 40 years, because you're poor, afraid of doctors, and your religious beliefs won't let you have any operation that might include a blood transfusion
( Photos, and video, under the cut. AAARRHHHHGHHH!!!!Collapse )