Published online Sep 28, 2014. doi: 10.4329/wjr.v6.i9.677
Revised: July 13, 2014
Accepted: July 25, 2014
Published online: September 28, 2014
Vascular anomalies, including vascular malformations and tumors, are frequently straightforward to detect; however, accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment are often challenging. Misdiagnosis of these lesions can lead clinicians in the wrong direction when treating these patients, which can have unfavorable results. This review presents an overview of the classification systems that have been developed for the diagnosis of vascular lesions with a focus on the imaging characteristics. Pictorial examples of each lesion on physical examination, as well as non-invasive and minimally invasive imaging are presented. An overview of the endovascular treatment of these lesions is also given. In some cases, vascular anomalies may be associated with an underlying syndrome and several of the most commonly encountered syndromes are discussed. Understanding of the classification systems, familiarity with the treatment options and knowledge of the associated syndromes are essential for all physicians working with this patient population. The approach to the described entities necessitates an organized multi-disciplinary team effort, with diagnostic imaging playing an increasingly important role in the proper diagnosis and a combined interventional radiologic and surgical treatment method showing promising results.
Core tip: Accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment of vascular anomalies are challenging endeavors. This review presents a summary of the classification systems for vascular anomalies, a review of endovascular treatment options, and a brief look at several associated syndromes. Understanding of the diagnosis and treatment of these lesions is essential for all physicians working with this patient population.