This leaflet is to help you understand what angiomyxoma is, what tests you need and the implication of being diagnosed for you, your baby and your family.
What is an Angiomyxoma of umbilical cord?
Angiomyxoma of the umbilical cord is a benign tumor arising from umbilical cord vessels. It consists of a firm nodule, ranging in size from 0.2 to 18 cm and generally encompassed by swelling and edema of the soft tissue in the umbilical cord. The edema is due to high permeability of the vessels that are placed in a soft, gelatinous tissue.
How does an Angiomyxoma happen?
It is not clear why an angiomyxoma occurs. It is a rare condition, and the incidence is unknown. In most cases, an angiomyxoma occurs spontaneously and is not due to other factors. Almost all babies with an angiomyxoma will not have other problems. Angiomyxoma is not associated with genetic or chromosomal abnormalities in the baby.
Should I have more tests done?
Many women will choose to have more tests done to know more about the condition of the baby. The tests available depend on where you are. Tests to ask about include:
- Detailed ultrasound scan - to look for other possible problems.
- Fetal echocardiography - a specialized ultrasound of the heart of the baby during the pregnancy, which uses sound waves that “echo” off the structures of the fetus' heart.
- MRI scan - a scan can sometimes be done to provide information on the condition of the baby. This scan uses strong magnetic fields and radio waves to create detailed images of the inside of the body and can rule out other causes of a growth or mass in the cord.
What are the things to watch for during the pregnancy?
Babies with an angiomyxoma are at risk of problems during the pregnancy. That is why most specialists will recommend regular ultrasound examination at least every four weeks. The ultrasound will help identify if the baby is not feeling well. Serial ultrasound examinations will also show if the tumor is growing and the rate of growth.
What does it mean for me and my baby?
The condition can affect the preferable mode of delivery. Factors that determine whether vaginal delivery or Caesarean Section is preferable might include the size of the tumor or the baby’s condition. There is also a possibility of withdrawing the fluid from the liquid part of the tumor while the baby is in the belly enabling vaginal delivery.
Will it happen again?
The risk of this happening again is very small. There is no data on the recurrence rate in the literature.
What other questions should I ask?
- Does the baby have any other anatomical anomalies?
- How quick is the angiomyxoma growing?
- Is the baby feeling well?
- How often should I have ultrasound examinations done?
- Where should I deliver?
- What is the best route of delivery?
Last updated: May 2022