[Skip to Content]
Sign In
Individual Sign In
Create an Account
Institutional Sign In
OpenAthens Shibboleth
[Skip to Content Landing]
November 1985

Mesenteric Cysts and Intra-abdominal Cystic Lymphangiomas

Author Affiliations

From the Surgical Service, Veterans Administration Medical Center West Los Angeles (Drs Calabria and Stabile), and the Department of Surgery, UCLA School of Medicine (Drs Takiff and Stabile). Mr Yin is an undergraduate student at the University of California, Riverside.

Arch Surg. 1985;120(11):1266-1269. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1985.01390350048010

• Although mesenteric cysts and intra-abdominal cystic lymphangiomas are uncommon and clinically confusing lesions, histologic and ultrastructural evidence suggests that they are pathologically distinct. Differentiation of these lesions is important since lymphangiomas may follow a proliferative and invasive course. Of 28 cases documented at laparotomy, histologically eight patients (29%) had cystic lymphangiomas and 20 patients (71%) had mesenteric cysts. Lymphangioma was found to be exclusively a disease of childhood and young adulthood (mean age, 10 years); mesenteric cyst was found in all age groups (mean age, 44 years), and two thirds of these patients were over 40 years old. Patients with lymphangiomas more frequently were male (75% vs 30%), symptomatic (88% vs 35%), and had ascites (50% vs 0%) and larger lesions (mean, 8.8 vs 4.7 cm) when compared with patients with mesenteric cysts. Complete excision was possible in all but four patients, with no operative deaths and a postoperative complication rate of 7%. After a mean follow-up period of four years, there were no recurrences among 16 patients who had undergone complete excision.

(Arch Surg 1985;120:1266-1269)

Sprague NF:  Mesenteric cysts . Am Surg 1960;26:42-49.
Caropreso PR:  Mesenteric cysts: A review . Arch Surg 1974;108: 242-246.Article
Beahrs OH, Judd ES, Dockerty MB:  Chylous cysts of the abdomen . Surg Clin North Am 1950;30:1081-1096.
Hardin WJ, Hardy JD:  Mesenteric cysts . Am J Surg 1970;119:640-645.Article
Sánchez RE, Gordon HE, Passaro E:  Mesenteric cysts: A review and report of four cases . Am Surg 1970;36:378-382.
Takeuchi S, Yamagushi M, Sakurai M, et al:  A case of mesenteric cyst diagnosed by ultrasound examination and a review of Japanese literature . Jpn J Surg 1979;9:359-365.Article
Walker AR, Putnam TC:  Omental, mesenteric, and retroperitoneal cysts: A clinical study of 33 new cases . Ann Surg 1973;178:13-19.Article
Carpenter HA, Lancaster JR, Lee RA:  Multilocular cysts of the peritoneum . Mayo Clin Proc 1982;57:634-638.
Harrow BR:  Retroperitoneal lymphatic cyst (cystic lymphangioma) . J Urol 1957;77:82-89.
Baker AH:  Developmental mesenteric cysts . Br J Surg 1961;48: 534-540.Article
Marcus JB, Lynn JA:  Ultrastructural comparison of an adenomatoid tumor, lymphangioma, hemangioma, and mesothelioma . Cancer 1970;25: 171-175.Article
Mannemeyer R, Smith M:  Multicystic, peritoneal mesothelioma: A report with electron microscopy of a case mimicking intra-abdominal cystic hygroma (lymphangioma) . Cancer 1979;44:692-698.Article
Moore JH, Crum CP, Chandler JG, et al:  Benign cystic mesothelioma . Cancer 1980;45:2395-2399.Article
Axiotis CA, Zeman RK, Chuong JH, et al:  Intra-abdominal lymphangiectactic cysts: An uncommon abdominal lesion in children and young adults . J Clin Gastroenterol 1983;5:541-548.Article
Horkins GA, Sabiston DC:  Lymphangioma in infancy and childhood . Surgery 1960;47:811-822.
Estourgie RJA, Van Beek MWPM:  Mesenteric cysts . Z Kinderchir 1981;32:223-230.
Burnett WE, Rosemond GP, Bucher RM:  Mesenteric cysts . Arch Surg 1950;60:699-706.Article
Rekhi BM, Esselstyn CB, Levy I:  Retroperitoneal cystic lymphangioma . Clev Clin Q 1972;39:125-128.Article
Rauch RF:  Retroperitoneal lymphangioma . Arch Surg 1959;78:45-59.Article
Sun CCJ, Tank CK, Hill JL:  Mesenteric lymphangioma . Arch Pathol Lab Med 1980;104:316-318.
Godart S:  Embryological significance of lymphangioma . Arch Dis Child 1966;41:204-206.Article
Elliott GB, Kliman MR, Elliot KA:  Persistence of lymphatico-venous shunts at the level of the microcirculation: Their relationship to 'lymphangioma' of mesentery . Ann Surg 1970;172:131-136.
Farrell WJ, Grube P:  Intra-abdominal cystic lymphangiomas . Am J Surg 1964;108:790-793.Article
Bill AH, Sumner DS:  A unified concept of lymphangioma and cystic hygroma . Surg Gynecol Obstet 1965;120:79-86.
Cheskis AL:  Suppurative cysts (lymphangiomas) of the mesentery proper in children . Sov Med 1964;28:70-73.
Van Mil JBC, Lameris JS:  Unusual appearance of a mesenteric cyst . Diagn Imaging 1983;52:28-32.
Rifkin MD, Kurtz AB, Pasto ME:  Mesenteric chylos (lymph-containing) cyst . Gastrointest Radiol 1983;8:267-269.Article
Dalaker K:  Chylous cyst of the mesentery of the transverse colon . Acta Chir Scand 1979;145:207-208.
Keough KMW, Hawco M, Acharya S, et al:  A chylous mesenteric cyst and a study of its contents . Dig Dis Sci 1979;24:797-801.Article
Guthrie RF, Wakefield EG:  Mesenteric cysts . Mayo Clin Proc 1943;18:52-58.