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Am J Med Genet. 1992 Feb 1;42(3):346-51.

Terminal transverse limb defects associated with familial cavernous angiomatosis.

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  • 1Department of Pediatrics, Walter Reed Army Medical Center, Washington, DC 20307.


Terminal transverse limb defects rarely are reported as familial. Multiple pathogenetic mechanisms, including vascular disruption, have been proposed to account for these defects. We report on a family followed over the past 6 years known to have familial cavernous angiomatosis in which 2 relatives have similar terminal transverse defects at the mid-forearm. Multiple relatives have had episodic bleeding from intracranial cavernous angiomas, a distinct finding in this disorder. Other findings in this family include retinal cavernous angiomas (2 patients), a high incidence of skin angiomas (12 patients), cavernous angiomas of the soft tissue (2 patients), and a hepatic angioma (one patient). One of the 2 individuals with the limb defect was evaluated extensively. Magnetic resonance imaging of the forearm with the terminal transverse defect using gadolinium-DTPA enhancement showed abrupt termination of all structures distal to the normal radial and ulnar heads. We propose that familial cavernous angiomatosis may be a new cause of vascular disruption resulting in terminal transverse limb defects.

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