Maternal age, body mass index (BMI), and placental abnormalities — along with increased artificial reproductive technology (ART) use and gestational diabetes (GD)—may play a role in the development of infant hemangiomas (IH), according to study results published in Pediatric Dermatology.

Researchers reviewed the charts of 869 mothers and infants —in cases where infants were diagnosed with IH — between January 1, 1976 and December 31, 2010. The goal was to study prenatal complications and common factors to find prenatal risk factors associated with IH.

Over the 35‐year period, rates of ART use increased in this population from less than 1% at study onset to 6% (P <.001). The use of prenatal progesterone significantly grew from less than 1% to 19% (P <.001); corticosteroid use also drastically increased from 2% to 12% (P <.001). Placental abnormalities, over the study period, grew from 3% to 8% (P =.015). 

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The pervasiveness of mothers with GD climbed from 1% to 8% (P <.001), which corresponded with increased mean maternal BMI (from 21.5 to 23.9, P <.001). Maternal age also increased across the study period from a mean of 27 years old at the time of delivery to 29.5 years old at the time of delivery (P <.001).

Over the study period, maternal age, GD, maternal BMI, ART, maternal progesterone, and placental abnormalities increased in the IH study population. Researchers concluded, “Better understanding of the association and trends of these risk factors in the development of IH will direct further research in the pathogenesis of IH.”

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Schoch JJ, Hunjan MK, Anderson KR, et al. Temporal trends in prenatal risk factors for the development of infantile hemangiomas [published online September 6, 2018]. Pediatr Dermatol. doi.10.1111/pde.13659