Lymphatic malformations: Review of current treatment

Jonathan A. Perkins, Scott C. Manning, Richard M. Tempero, Michael J. Cunningham, Joseph L. Edmonds, Fredric A. Hoffer, Mark A. Egbert

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

199 Scopus citations


Objective: Summarize current knowledge of lymphatic malformation medical, sclerotherapy, and surgical treatment; and highlight areas of treatment controversy and treatment difficulty that need improvement. Methods: Panel presentation of various aspects of lymphatic malformation treatment. Results: The mainstay of lymphatic malformation treatment has been surgical resection, which has been refined through lesion staging and radiographic characterization. Intralesional sclerotherapy in macrocystic lymphatic malformations is effective. Suprahyoid microcystic lymphatic malformations are more difficult to treat than macrocystic lymphatic malformations in the infrahyoid and posterior cervical regions. Bilateral suprahyoid lymphatic malformations require staged treatment to prevent complications. Lymphatic malformation treatment planning is primarily determined by the presence or possibility of functional compromise. Problematic areas include chronic lymphatic malformation inflammation, dental health maintenance, macroglossia, airway obstruction, and dental malocclusion. Conclusions: Lymphatic malformation treatment improvements have been made through radiographic characterization and staging of lymphatic malformations. Direct malformation involvement of the upper aerodigestive tract can cause significant functional compromise that is difficult to treat.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)795-803.e1
JournalOtolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Otorhinolaryngology


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