Forums Health boy, four, with cysts the size of a grapefruit on his face (photos

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    Valentine
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    • Alex Grabowski, from Somerset, was born with cystic hygromas on his face  
    •  The large growths have affected his speech, ability to walk, breathe and feed
    •  He underwent a series of eight-hour surgeries at Great Ormond Street Hospital

    Alex Grabowski, four, has taken his first steps following operations to reduce facial cysts the size of a grapefruit which have affected his balance

    Alex Grabowski from Somerset was born with cystic hygromas, which are a collection of fluid-filled cysts, on his face and in his airways.

    The condition affected Alex’s speech and ability to walk, while he also needed a tracheostomy to help him breathe and a tube for feeding.

    Alex Grabowski, four, has taken his first steps following operations to reduce facial cysts the size of a grapefruit which have affected his balance

    Alex pictured with his brother Roman and their mum Emily Grabowski at their home in BristolAlex pictured with his brother Roman and their mum Emily Grabowski at their home in Bristol

    But following a series of eight-hour surgeries to reduce the cysts at Great Ormond Street Hospital in London, Alex has finally taken his first steps without support and is forming sentences

     

    The condition was first picked up at the 20-week scan and after he was born in January 2017, Alex spent the first six months of his life undergoing operations at Bristol Royal Hospital for Children.

    Alex has 'come on in leaps and bounds' after undergoing the procedures to reduce his cysts

    Ms Grabowski revealed seeing her young son being taken off for eight-hour operations reduced her to tears with concern, especially as there was a risk of paralysis because one of the cysts had grown over a nerve.

    Now on the path to hopefully leading a more independent life, Ms Grabowski said most people had been supportive and ‘lovely’, although ‘there have been some nasty comments.’

    Alex's condition was picked up on his 20-week scan and he spent the first six months of his life undergoing operations at Bristol Royal Hospital for Children

    She added: ‘People have told me he looks scary and one man came up to me and asked if he was real.

    ‘I am worried about him having to deal with it by himself when he is older but I love Alex and I wouldn’t change a thing.’

     

     

     

    WHAT IS A CYSTIC HYGROMA?

    Cystic hygromas, also referred to as lymphatic malformations, are a collection of small cysts.

    The cysts are filled with a clear fluid similar to the fluid in a blister.

    The cysts have no purpose and can cause problems. The walls of the cysts are quite thin and contain little blood vessels.

    Cystic hygromas most commonly form on the neck and armpits.

    They occur when the lymph vessels fail to form correctly during the first few weeks of pregnancy.

    Due to them occurring so early on in pregnancies, they cannot be prevented.

    Cystic hygromas can be detected during pregnancy scans.

    Most are visible during birth or early infancy and appear as painless, translucent, soft lumps.

    Treatment is not always required but may involve surgical removal or injection sclerotherapy.

    Sclerotherapy causes an inflammatory reaction that makes cystic hygromas shrink.

    Cosmetic surgery may be performed in later life to reduce scarring.

    They affect up to one per cent of newborns in the UK. Their US prevalence is unknown.

    Source: Great Ormond Street Hospital 

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    #1447164 Reply
    Dãñîél wírê
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    poor boy

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    #1447166 Reply
    sweet
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    eyaa

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    #1447167 Reply
    @esthy
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    God will heal and be with him all through his life

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    #1447201 Reply
    Original Ann
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    Chai, poor boy, God will heal u dear.

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    #1447203 Reply
    Damilola
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    Hmm poor boy 👦 😢😨😩😵😳😞😞

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    #1447234 Reply
    Grace
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    Poor boy

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    #1447285 Reply
    LadyG
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    This is terrible.

    God pls heal him.

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