Cystic hygromas occur in approximately 1% of pregnancies during the 9th to 16th week of gestation.
A cystic hygroma is a fluid-filled sac that occurs when there is a blockage in the lymphatic system. They appear as single or multiple cysts and are usually found on the neck. In a fetus, the cystic hygroma can turn into hydrops, an excessive amount of fluid in the baby's body) in which the fetus could possibly die. Each case is different. Some may resolve and lead to other conditions such as webbed neck, swelling and a yelloish-tan tumor on the skin while other cases of cystic hygromas can become very large, often larger than the fetus itself. Many babies that have other birth defects will have cystic hygromas, with the most common being Turner Syndrome and Trisomy 13, 18 and 21.
Cystic Hygromas are caused by environmental factors and genetic factors. Environmental factors that would contribute to a cystic hygroma are maternal infections or alcohol abuse. This can be diagnosed prenatally through detailed ultrasounds, amniocentesis and CVS. A baby could also be diagnosed after birth through a physical examination.
Although there is generally a poor prognosis for a baby that has been diagnosed with a fetal cystic hygroma, some babies do well and the hygroma resolves. Babies that have this condition should be delivered in a hospital with the means of caring for a sick neonate. If the cystic hygroma is large, a cesarean section may be required for a safe delivery.
Comments 1 to 14 of about 14. 1
943 days ago.
This past Tuesday, I went in for an ultrasound, only to see that my baby no longer had a heartbeat. This was my sixth pregnancy. (My husband and I don't have any children.) The doctor diagnosed me as having a cystic hygroma, or Turner's Syndrome. We could clearly see a bubble like formation surrounding our entire baby. I have a D&C tomorrow morning. It is beyond difficult to accept that this is God's plan for us, to be childless and broken. After six unsuccessful pregnancies, not one lasting beyond 13 weeks, we have decided that we will no longer try to have a baby. It's just not in God's plans for us. It is emotionally devastating. The worst part is not having a decent support system to help us through. My heart goes out to everyone who has undergone pregnancy loss and are dealing with painful diagnoses.
1148 days ago.
Hi, i am almost 16 weeks pregnant, i found out yesterday that my baby has 7mm of fluid around their neck, i have been told there is a 60% chance my baby has turners syndrome or is downs syndrome.
I am really wanting to hear some positive stories, i had the aminocentises (sp) done this morning, but really struggling to remain positive. My husband and i have been trying for this baby for over a year. I live in Zimbabwe, so test reults have to be sent out of the country to be tested... the wait is unbearable. I am 25 years old and needing support and advice on what to do. Any feedback would be greatly appreciated.
1176 days ago.
My name is Kyndra and I'm 24 years old. I was born with cystic hygroma. I had a large mass the size of a baseball on my left side of my neck. I have hygroma on my vocal cords, in my chest and under my tongue. I had the huge mass removed when I was three days old. I became paralyzed on my left side if my face. However, this was 24 years ago. They didn't have the technology then that they have now. My doctors told my parents I would never talk or walk. They were wrong. Besides the abnormality in my face, I was just like any other kid growing up. I also had severe scoliosis in which I had a spinal fusion in 2004. I'm not pregnant but I wanted everyone to know that I wasn't supposed to do a lot of things but the doctors were wrong. Sometimes doctors get it wrong, why not give your baby every chance to live. I'm not saying get your hopes up, just expect the worst but let things happen on their own. You might be glad you did :)
1682 days ago.
I found out that my baby had a Cystic Hygroma when I was 9 weeks and 4 days pregnant and it was the worst news I have ever got in my life. It measured 7.2mm. We went back to another doctor and they told us to just give up and terminate. But me going to be a mom said no. I was and still am not going to terminate my baby until I know what is wrong with it. I scheduled a CVS which was the worst procedure ever. That was the worst pain I have ever endured in my life. But they measured the Cyst while I was there and it was 6.3 and kicking while sucking its thumb. I was so happy. Now I have to wait 7 business days to get the results from my test and it is the longest 7 days of my life
1694 days ago.
My second pregnancy with my daughter i had issues from the beginning, but i didnt get an ultrasound until i was 25 weeks. At 12 weeks i was in the ER 2-3 times a week with sever abdominal cramps, that we now know was bractin hics (spelling?). I wasnt given an ultra-sound, nor did my doctor believe me and didnt order one. I was told by all the doctors that it was jitters and that i was having growing pains. I KNEW something was wrong, but i quieted when the doctor told me my baby's heart rate was fine. At 25 weeks i FINALLY got my first ultra-sound, and the doctor sent me straight to Winnie Palmer Hospital in Orlando, Florida. There my new doctor told me i had two options, medical abortion or wait for my daughter to die. They told me her hygroma was larger than her body, and there was nothing that could be done. A week later we scheduled a amniocytesis (sp?) to see what may have caused it, me praying that it wasnt true. They told me she was in cardiac arrest, and they decided to induce labor in lue of C-section. In hope for her to survive i refused any 'drugs' and was in labor for 28 hours. On August 24, 2006 at 7:18 am Maria Rosa Hernandez-Norvitz, 12.2 oz 7in long, was still born. I'm telling my story to all of you out there who have had problems in thier pregnancy, dont let the doctors tell u its fine, if they wont listen to you, find a doctor that will, because noone but you can tell if something is truly wrong, a mother always knows.
1703 days ago.
hi ladies i really hope that this helps.
i was told my baby had a cystic hygroma and it measured 5ml at my 11 week scan then at my 16 week scan the fluid had decreased to 4.1ml but at my 22 week scan i was told the fluid increased to 7ml. at all of these scans i was offered a termination but we refused point blank ase wanted our baby no matter what how he looked or even what could be wrong with him, i was offered all the tests going but again me and my partner refused all of them we were prepared for anything that was thrown at us. we had regular growth scans every 4 weeks and i felt alot of hope as my partners dad past away and my partners nieces went to see a spiritualist and peters dad came through and sed that every thing was going to be ok and the name we picked was just perfect so from then on it didnt bother us until the night b4 i gave birth my mum told me my sister had sed 'what if he does come out with downs' then it got me thinking and a little upset, then i gave birth on january 27th 2011 @ 4.33pm and he was perfect in everyway possible.
so ladies dont give up hope if the fluid measures 6-7ml or less take a chance i did and it worked my way. if its more have tests done but they may come back normal. but in some cases they dont as u have read on here already.
1835 days ago.
Although I had a medical abortion at 15 weeks 5 days (last Wednesday) due to the baby not going to make it, if anyone has any questions, or would like to check out my blogs to know what I went through so you know you aren't alone, please do. Feel free to contact me.
1854 days ago.
I have just been told that my 13 week 5 day had measured 10.2mm.. We spent the day at the Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario with the Genetic Dept and so far I'm am scared SH*TLESS!! I hope to God he has a better plan for me than this.. I can't take any more heart break after having 3 m/c's between July - Dec last year. Anyone have any thoughts on this?? The Genetics Dept said that they have seen a large one end up as nothing and the opposite.. As well a small one end up as both BIG and LITTLE.. Never been such a mess in my entire life.. Please help!
1916 days ago.
My son was diagnosed with cystic hygroma at 10 1/2 weeks gestation when the doctor couldn't find his heartbeat and sent me for an ultrasound. We were devastated and went for genetic counseling and scheduled an ultrasound at 15 & 18 wks. The doctors couldn't explain why this had occured only if the baby was a girl there would be a 1% chance of survival. We were very excited and hopeful to discover @ 15wks it was a boy! However by 15 wks. gestation the hygroma had moved to the sides of his neck (I'm sorry I don't remember the sizes). We didn't know what this meant but at the 18 wk. ultrasound the hygromas were gone. We never had genetic testing done & still haven't. (We didn't want to risk the baby's health with an amniocentesis because regardless we were going to follow the pregnancy through to the end).
I am writing this to try and give some mothers hope. My son is now a healthy and normal 6 year old boy. This can be a very devastating diagnosis without always having an answer for why it happens, but there is and can be hope.
1967 days ago.
I am 12 wks pregnant and my baby has a cystic hygroma of 8.2mm. This is very large and high risk so i have been booked in for a CVS later this week.
I'm just wondering if there's anyone else out there who this has happened too, with a similar size one and what the outcome was?
I have been prepared to expect the worse outcome.
2265 days ago.
I have a happy ending too!
Our son was diagnosed with a CH (4.3mm down his neck and spine)at our 12 week scan. From what we were told we thought it was a definite he would either have a chromosome disorder or a heart defect, we were devastated.
We opted for the CVS which came back totally clear. We then had cardiac scans at 16 weeks (we were told the CH had gone then) 28 weeks and 34 weeks. Everything was fine.
I had an elective section but that was nothing to do with the CH. We now have the sweetest 9 month old baby boy, with absolutely nothing wrong with him!
2328 days ago.
My baby was diagnosed with fetal cystic hygroma. It is the hardest thing I've experienced in my life to date. I wrote about it on my pregnancy page.
Upon diagnosis, the actual odds of giving birth to a healthy baby are about 20%, according to most recent studies. It is actually 50% of the cases that are chromosomal issues and 50% that are not. Of those that aren't, other issues can be present. Therefore I know the 50% resolving rate is not accurate, though it certainly can resolve. Mine has.
I've done a ton of research. If anyone ever has any questions, feel free to ask as I'm going through this right now.
2478 days ago.
i am pregnant with a son who has a cystic hygroma and i am looking for as much info as possible we had cvs testing and the fish test came back normal male we are now awaiting more tests
2603 days ago.
My son was diagnosed with a cystic hygroma at 13 weeks....what this article doesn't say is that in 50% of the cases, the hygroma will spontaneously resolve by 18-20 weeks, with no lingering side effects. There are more being detected now because of the frequency of the early ultrasound.
My son was in the lucky 50%--at our 20 week ultrasound, his hygroma had completely resolved (and his was large, at 3.5 mm, from the base of his head down to his tailbone). His heart was completely without defects. He was born perfect...no problems whatsoever. And I don't have to worry about any chromosomal defects that have yet to show up as we did the kerotyping and he was also fine (via transabdominal CVS--my placenta had moved and they couldn't do it transvaginally).
Believe me...I am grateful. Every time I see those words, 'cystic hygroma' I want to cry...it was terribly scarey but, if you are reading this, please know that some of us come out on the other end, completely intact and fully functioning...with a normal neck.
Leave a message Become a member to be able to comment.
(Sign up) It's all free, no email is required.