When she was born, it was just a little bit darker than her skin colour. Like a birthmark. It changed as time went on, and continues to.
Hemangioma at 1 month old.
As you can see, at a month old, it was starting to get pink. A hemangioma is an abnormal buildup of blood vessels in the skin or internal organs. In our daughter's case, she had what is called a "strawberry hemangioma". "Superficial or "strawberry" hemangiomas often are not treated. When they are allowed to disappear on their own, the result is usually normal-appearing skin. In some cases, a laser may be used to remove the small vessels."
They are more common in girls than boys, and there is nothing a mother "did" during her pregnancy to cause it. As many as 10% of babies born will develop a hemangioma before a year old.
Hemangioma, 2 months old.
By two months old, it was turning the normal red (which is where it gets it's "strawberry" name from). You could clearly see the blood vessels in it, and when you pressed on it, you could see it turn pale, and then turn red again as blood flowed back into it. At this point, it was still flat and even with her skin.
Hemangioma, 3 months old.
By three months old, it was at it's worst. It was bright red, and raised off of her skin. It literally looked like someone had cut a thin piece of strawberry, and placed it on her belly. It never bothered her, and touching it didn't hurt her.
Hemangioma, 5 months old.
By five months old, it had almost flattened out again. It was starting to get areas that were lighter, as you can see from the photo.
Hemangioma, 8 months old.
Here we are at 8 months old. Her mark is not nearly as visible as it once was, and is still completely flat. Only the very top of it has a clearly obvious pink-ness to it, and it's hard to see the blood vessels in it. It seems like every day the areas that are flesh-coloured are getting larger, and the darker areas are getting smaller. However, if she is cold, it turns a light shade of purple. I think it always might, even if it gets to the point that it looks normal otherwise.
Strawberry hemangiomas are "superficial, and most hemangiomas often disappear on their own. About 50% go away by age 5, and 90% are gone by age 9." (Link HERE.)
About 30% of hemangiomas are present at birth, the rest appear in the first several months of life. (As in the YouTube video.)
Most hemangiomas are on the face, neck, or head.
There are several kinds of hemangiomas:
Tumorous lesions that develop near the surface of an infant's skin are called superficial hemangiomas, explain medical experts with Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center. Typically, superficial hemangiomas appear bright red in color and lie flat against the skin. Certain children can develop a superficial tumor called a strawberry hemangioma, which causes a raised, red lesion to appear across the skin. (What my daughter has.)
A child who develops a hemangioma tumor within her muscles, internal organs or lower skin layers has a type of skin lesion called a deep hemangioma, according to health experts with Children's Healthcare of Atlanta. Deep hemangiomas may appear smooth across the skin's surface, but develop a blue or gray color. This type of hemangioma tumor may not be detectable until a child is several weeks or months old because it begins deep beneath the skin, explains Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center. Once detected, a deep hemangioma can feel firm or rubbery to the touch.
Combined or Mixed Hemangioma
Children who develop hemangioma tumors within the upper skin layers as well as within their bodies, lower skin layers or muscles have combined or mixed hemangioma tumors, report Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center health professionals. The skin lesions exhibit characteristics of both superficial and deep hemangiomas and can appear red and blue in color. Combined or mixed hemangiomas can appear as flat or raised lesions across an infant's skin.(Taken from HERE.)
"Hemangioma is the most common benign tumor affecting the liver. Hepatic hemangiomas are mesenchymal in origin and usually are solitary. Some authorities consider them to be benign congenital hamartomas.Hemangiomas are composed of masses of blood vessels that are atypical or irregular in arrangement and size. Etiology remains unknown." (Found HERE.)
"...are thought to be present in as many as 7% of healthy people. Hemangiomas are four to six times more common in women than in men. Female hormones may promote the formation and growth of hemangiomas. Hemangiomas, although referred to as tumors, are not malignant and do not become cancerous. Hemangiomas are not unique to the liver and can occur almost anywhere in the body." (Found HERE.)
More information on Hemangiomas found HERE, and HERE.
I wanted to post something about hemangiomas, just so that people don't think they're alone when their child has one. It's something people don't really talk about, and I thought it was high time to inform people about them.