Lymphatic malformation (LM) is an abnormality of lymph vessels. (The older terms are “cystic hygroma” and “lymphangioma”.) Lymph is a clear-yellowish fluid that carries fats and proteins back to the bloodstream and helps remove bacteria from bodily tissues. Lymph vessels drain fluid from parts of the body that become swollen during an infection. If these vessels are malformed at birth, they form large, soft masses, usually in the head and neck, armpit, or groin area. The most common problem associated with lymphatic malformations is infection. Most such infections are minor and go away after antibiotic treatment. In more serious cases, the child must stay in the hospital to receive antibiotics intravenously (directly in a vein). Another potential problem is bleeding into a lymphatic malformation, which can cause pain and swelling, but usually not fever.
Learn more about Lymphatic malformation (LM) in Related Articles: Vascular Malformations« Back to Glossary Index