Conditions + Treatments

CLOVES Syndrome | Diagnosis

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Contact the Vascular Anomalies Center

How is CLOVES syndrome diagnosed?

Because symptoms of CLOVES syndrome can be subtle and hard to notice right away (or obvious and causing clear problems in day-to-day life), it’s critical to seek a diagnosis from an experienced vascular anomalies specialist.

To diagnose CLOVES syndrome, doctors will usually combine these steps:

Can a prenatal ultrasound detect CLOVES syndrome?

CLOVES is so rare and still not a widely known disorder that an ultrasound is not a foolproof way to detect it. A clinical exam must be performed after birth.

Can CLOVES be confused with other conditions?

Children with CLOVES syndrome are often mistakenly diagnosed as having other disorders that cause overgrowth of the blood vessels and abnormalities in certain parts of the body, such as:

  • Hemihypertrophy: a condition in which the structures on one side of a child’s body are larger than on the other
  • Klippel-Trenaunay syndrome: a rare disease that causes abnormal fatty growths of the leg, dilated veins, lymphatic malformations and port-wine stain birthmarks
  • Proteus syndrome: a rare condition that causes progressive deformities of the bone, skin and soft tissue

The main difference between these conditions and CLOVES is that CLOVES causes a combination of vascular, skin and limb/torso abnormalities and truncal/spinal abnormalities (like fatty masses, scoliosis or tethered cord).

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