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Cavernous Hemangioma Treatment & Management

  • Author: Adam J Cohen, MD; Chief Editor: Hampton Roy, Sr, MD  more...
 
Updated: Sep 01, 2015
 

Surgical Care

Most cavernous angiomas require no intervention. If surgical extirpation is indicated, the approach to the orbit is dictated by tumor location within the orbit.[5]

Most cavernous angiomas are found between the optic nerve and extraocular muscles within the intraconal space. A lateral orbitotomy, or a variant thereof, is a typical approach. Tumors within the medial aspect of the orbit are approached best through an upper eyelid or a transcaruncular-based medial orbitotomy. Additionally, an anterior orbitotomy via a lower eyelid transconjunctival approach can be used. This approach was used for removal of intraconal hemangiomas extending to the orbital apex.[6]

See the images below.

MRI demonstrates enhancing mass in apex of left or MRI demonstrates enhancing mass in apex of left orbit. White arrow points to the superior portion of the optic nerve, showing its deviation. Mass was pressing on superotemporal optic nerve and displacing it inferomedially at apex. Patient had 6 months of progressive decreased vision and visual field loss. Courtesy of M. Duffy, MD, PhD.
In A, final preoperative visual field of same pati In A, final preoperative visual field of same patient as in Media file 2, demonstrating significant inferior altitudinal field loss; in B, postoperative visual field at approximately 3 weeks after orbital apex decompression and removal of mass; and in C, postoperative visual field at approximately 6 months.
Intraoperative photo of same patient as in Media f Intraoperative photo of same patient as in Media file 2. Neurosurgical service performed craniotomy and decompression of the superior orbital fissure and optic canal (yellow arrows) at request of ophthalmology service. Orbital surgery service then opened the periorbita over a bulge (double black arrows) between optic nerve and cranial nerves (single black arrow) and bluntly dissected out mass. Pathology confirmed mass as a cavernous hemangioma. Cranial nerves V and IV were adhered, and careful blunt separation was performed. Postoperatively, a small left hypertropia resolved over 6 weeks. Courtesy of M. Duffy, MD, PhD.

After adequate exposure, a well-circumscribed, purple, encapsulated lesion is seen with distinct vessels on its surface. Gentle blunt dissection allows for en-bloc removal after all vessels have been identified and cauterized with bipolar cautery.

See the image below.

Extirpation of an orbital cavernous hemangioma. No Extirpation of an orbital cavernous hemangioma. Note en bloc removal and preservation of capsule. Courtesy of Robert Alan Goldberg, MD.

The cryoprobe allows for removal of well-circumscribed lesions, reducing the incidence of capsular rupture and bleeding, making it an ideal tool for hemangioma extirpation. A disadvantage of the cryoprobe is that adjacent orbital structures also may be frozen, as is the case with deep orbital tumors.

Use of the carbon dioxide laser or Nd:YAG laser is another modality for the surgeon faced with the task of tumor removal.

Gamma knife surgery has been used with success. Liu et al found gamma knife surgery to be an effective treatment in 23 patients with orbital cavernous hemangiomas.[7]

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Consultations

If the cavernous hemangioma has an intracranial component or extends to facial structures outside the orbit, neurosurgical or otolaryngologic consultation should be sought.

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Contributor Information and Disclosures
Author

Adam J Cohen, MD Assistant Professor of Ophthalmology, Section Director of Oculoplastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Rush Medical College of Rush University Medical Center

Adam J Cohen, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Ophthalmology, American Society of Ophthalmic Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, American College of Surgeons

Disclosure: Serve(d) as a director, officer, partner, employee, advisor, consultant or trustee for: BioD, Poferious<br/>Serve(d) as a speaker or a member of a speakers bureau for: IOP<br/>Received income in an amount equal to or greater than $250 from: IOP for speaking.

Coauthor(s)

Michael Mercandetti, MD, MBA, FACS Private Practice

Michael Mercandetti, MD, MBA, FACS is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Sarasota County Medical Society, American Academy of Ophthalmology, American College of Surgeons, American Society for Laser Medicine and Surgery, American Society of Ophthalmic Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Association of Military Surgeons of the US

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Specialty Editor Board

Francisco Talavera, PharmD, PhD Adjunct Assistant Professor, University of Nebraska Medical Center College of Pharmacy; Editor-in-Chief, Medscape Drug Reference

Disclosure: Received salary from Medscape for employment. for: Medscape.

Chief Editor

Hampton Roy, Sr, MD Associate Clinical Professor, Department of Ophthalmology, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences

Hampton Roy, Sr, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Ophthalmology, American College of Surgeons, Pan-American Association of Ophthalmology

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Additional Contributors

Andrew W Lawton, MD Neuro-Ophthalmology, Ochsner Health Services

Andrew W Lawton, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Ophthalmology, Arkansas Medical Society, Southern Medical Association

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Acknowledgements

David A Weinberg, MD, FACS Director, Oculoplastic and Orbital Surgery, Assistant Professor of Neurology and Ophthalmology, Department of Surgery, Division of Ophthalmology, Fletcher Allen Health Care

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

References
  1. Henderson GW. Vascular hamartomas, hyperplasias, and neoplasms. Henderson GW, ed. Orbital Tumors. New York: Raven Press; 1994. 94-100.

  2. Harris GJ, Jakobiec FA. Cavernous hemangioma of the orbit: a clinicopathologic analysis of sixty-six cases. Jakobiec, ed. Ocular and Adnexal Tumors. Birmingham, Ala: 1978. 741-81.

  3. Zauberman H, Feinsod M. Orbital hemangioma growth during pregnancy. Acta Ophthalmol (Copenh). 1970. 48(5):929-33. [Medline].

  4. Ko F, Dibernardo CW, Oak J, Miller NR, Subramanian PS. Confirmation of and differentiation among primary vascular lesions using ultrasonography. Ophthal Plast Reconstr Surg. 2011 Nov. 27(6):431-5. [Medline].

  5. Boari N, Gagliardi F, Castellazzi P, Mortini P. Surgical treatment of orbital cavernomas: clinical and functional outcome in a series of 20 patients. Acta Neurochir (Wien). 2011 Mar. 153(3):491-8. [Medline].

  6. Cho KJ, Paik JS, Yang SW. Surgical outcomes of transconjunctival anterior orbitotomy for intraconal orbital cavernous hemangioma. Korean J Ophthalmol. 2010 Oct. 24(5):274-8. [Medline]. [Full Text].

  7. Liu X, Xu D, Zhang Y, Liu D, Song G. Gamma Knife surgery in patients harboring orbital cavernous hemangiomas that were diagnosed on the basis of imaging findings. J Neurosurg. 2010 Dec. 113 Suppl:39-43. [Medline].

  8. Dortzbach RK, Kronish JW. Orbital disease. Dortzbach RK, ed. Ophthalmic Plastic Surgery Prevention and Management of Complications. New York: Raven Press; 1994. 312-25.

  9. Harris GJ, Jakobiec FA. Cavernous hemangioma of the orbit. J Neurosurg. 1979 Aug. 51(2):219-28. [Medline].

  10. Mercandetti M, Cohen AJ. Exophthalmos. Medscape Reference [serial online]. February 7, 2007. [Full Text].

  11. Mercandetti M, Cohen AJ. Tumors, orbital. Medscape Reference [serial online]. February 7, 2007. [Full Text].

  12. Rodgers IR, Grove AS. Vascular lesions of the orbit. Principles and Practice of Ophthalmology. Philadelphia: WB Saunders; 1994. 1970-1.

  13. Shields JA, Shields CL. Vascular and hemorrhagic lesions. Atlas of Orbital Tumors. Philadelphia: Lippincott, Williams and Wilkins; 1999. 50-56.

  14. Yan J, Wu Z. Cavernous hemangioma of the orbit: analysis of 214 cases. Orbit. 2004 Mar. 23(1):33-40. [Medline].

 
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Extirpation of an orbital cavernous hemangioma. Note en bloc removal and preservation of capsule. Courtesy of Robert Alan Goldberg, MD.
MRI demonstrates enhancing mass in apex of left orbit. White arrow points to the superior portion of the optic nerve, showing its deviation. Mass was pressing on superotemporal optic nerve and displacing it inferomedially at apex. Patient had 6 months of progressive decreased vision and visual field loss. Courtesy of M. Duffy, MD, PhD.
In A, final preoperative visual field of same patient as in Media file 2, demonstrating significant inferior altitudinal field loss; in B, postoperative visual field at approximately 3 weeks after orbital apex decompression and removal of mass; and in C, postoperative visual field at approximately 6 months.
Intraoperative photo of same patient as in Media file 2. Neurosurgical service performed craniotomy and decompression of the superior orbital fissure and optic canal (yellow arrows) at request of ophthalmology service. Orbital surgery service then opened the periorbita over a bulge (double black arrows) between optic nerve and cranial nerves (single black arrow) and bluntly dissected out mass. Pathology confirmed mass as a cavernous hemangioma. Cranial nerves V and IV were adhered, and careful blunt separation was performed. Postoperatively, a small left hypertropia resolved over 6 weeks. Courtesy of M. Duffy, MD, PhD.
 
 
 
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