Is a Cavernous Hemangioma Benign or Malignant?

Medically Reviewed on 12/29/2022
Cavernous Hemangioma
Most people with cavernous hemangioma do not show any complications.

Cavernous hemangioma is a benign, non-infiltrative, and slowly progressing tumor of the endothelial cells. A cavernous hemangioma is an unusual tangle of capillaries or tiny blood vessels prone to bleeding.

The cavernous hemangioma in the brain remains table for years without causing symptoms, bleeding, seizures, or stroke.

What are the types of cavernous hemangioma?

The variations of cavernous hemangioma include:

  • Cerebral hemangioma 
  • Liver hemangioma
  • Eye hemangioma

What are the causes of cavernous hemangioma?

The cause of cavernous hemangiomas is not known. An unknown cause results in about 80 percent of hemangiomas. Researchers have found a venous anomaly that increases the risk of cavernous hemangioma. Only 20 percent of cavernous hemangiomas are associated with genetic factors.

What are the symptoms of cavernous hemangioma?

The symptoms of cavernous hemangioma depend on the type of hemangioma.

The common symptoms include:

What are the complications of cavernous hemangioma?

Most people with cavernous hemangioma do not show any complications; however, when present, complications may include:

  • Malformation of the brain may lead to bleeding, which may further lead to hemorrhagic stroke, which can sometimes be life-threatening.
  • Cavernous malformation in the spine may cause a few neurological complications due to spine compression.
  • Malformations in the eye may result in vision loss.

What are the ways to diagnose cavernous hemangioma?

A cavernous hemangioma can be diagnosed in the following ways:

  • General and physical examination
  • Imaging tests
    • CT scans: Take pictures of internal organs using X-rays from different angles
    • MRIs: Use magnetic and radio waves to take pictures of your brain


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How are cavernous malformations treated?

Treatment depends on the types of malformation that have occurred. If the person does not show any symptoms, the healthcare provider will keep observing the series of brain scans to get a clear picture of the mass formed in the brain.

Medications are used to manage a few symptoms, such as seizures and headaches. Surgery is the primary approach to treating cavernous malformations.

Surgery is preferred for the following:

  • There are one or more episodes of bleeding.
  • Neurological problems are caused by bleeding.
  • Seizures cannot be controlled by using medications.

How to prevent cavernous malformations

  • Manage your blood pressure (<120/80 mmHg), blood sugar level (140 mg/dl two hours after eating and <99 mg/dl after eight hours of fast), and cholesterol levels.
  • Ask your healthcare provider about the blood thinners you take, such as aspirin, which may increase the tendency to bleed.
  • Stay physically active and exercise daily for at least 30 minutes.
  • Avoid alcohol and tobacco consumption. Ask your healthcare provider to help you quit alcohol and tobacco consumption.
Medically Reviewed on 12/29/2022
Image Source: iStock image