Purpose of review: To update current knowledge of basic science and clinical care of lymphatic malformations.
Recent findings: Advances in gene sequencing methods have allowed further elucidation of the genetic pathways involved in vascular development. New cell culture techniques are promising the development of practical models to test novel therapeutic interventions. Clinical treatment trends are continuing to shift more away from early surgery and toward sclerotherapy in appropriate cases. New emphasis has been placed upon quality of life analysis of treatment outcomes.
Summary: Basic science is increasing the understanding of vascular anomalies in general and may lead us soon toward more effective nonsurgical therapies. Focus on quality of life measures will help to elucidate the most effective therapeutic interventions.