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Congenital Lipomatous Overgrowth, Vascular Malformations, Epidermal Nevis, Spinal/Skeletal Anomalies/Scoliosis (CLOVES) syndrome is a very rare congenital (present at birth) disorder characterized by a combination of vascular (involving the blood vessels), skin, spinal and bone or joint abnormalities.
Fewer than 200 cases of CLOVES syndrome have been identified worldwide to date. CLOVES is thought to be caused by mutations in a gene called PIK3CA. The long-term picture for a child with CLOVES depends on age and how serious the symptoms are. The sooner the disease is detected and the proper course of treatment is started, the better the general outlook.
The Vascular Anomalies Center at Boston Children's takes an interdisciplinary approach to care with every child they see, meaning clinicians from many different specialties, all with expertise in treating CLOVES, together, as a team, will see your child. This kind of approach is critical with CLOVES, as it can affect many different parts of a child's body.
CLOVES was first described as a unique condition by a clinical and research team led by VAC co-director Ahmad Alomari, MD, in 2009. Our experience in treating numerous patients with CLOVES syndrome gives us the depth of knowledge about what symptoms to look for and how to plan treatment accordingly.
Research by Matthew Warman, MD, director of Boston Children’s Orthopedic Research Laboratories and pathologist Kyle Kurek, MD, has revealed that CLOVES is caused by mutations in a gene called PIK3CA. These mutations arise spontaneously in the womb, while a baby is developing. Thus far, there are no known risk factors that would make these mutations more or less likely to occur.
We are grateful to have been ranked #1 on U.S. News & World Report's list of the best children's hospitals in the nation for the third year in a row, an honor we could not have achieved without the patients and families who inspire us to do our very best for them. Thanks to you, Boston Children's is a place where we can write the greatest children's stories ever told.”