Terms below integrate medical definitions with "plain speak" explanations.

PHACE Syndrome - See PHACE SYNDROME section.

Hemangioma - A benign, self-healing tumor of endothelial cells (the cells that line blood vessels). Hemangiomas typically go through a 3-phase cycle:

  1. Proliferation - when the hemangioma grows very quickly, lasting anywhere from 6-12 months.
  2. Rest - when there's very little growth, generally until the infant is 1 or 2 years old.
  3. Involution - when healing begins and the hemangioma diminishes in size. Around 50 percent of hemangiomas will disappear by the age of 5, with the majority gone by puberty.
Often, laser treatments are performed beginning around the age of 3 or 4 years old in an attempt to lessen the visual impact on a child's face before he or she begins school.

Agenesis of the Corpus Callosum - Refers to the malformation of the largest connective pathway in the human brain. It links the left and right sides, or hemispheres. Normally, this part of the brain develops by the 16th week of pregnancy. In rare cases, it only partially forms or fails to form all together. "Complete" agenesis means there is no portion of the corpus callosum. Nothing can be done surgically to "fix" the malformation, with the most "healing" coming from the brain's ability to adapt (when thoughts find other ways to transmit between the two sides). Appropriate therapies have also been shown to help the brain adapt. This defect is often misdiagnosed as autism/Asperger's disorder, as its symptoms can be similar to those conditions, as well as attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and fixed interests and rituals similar to obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD).

Scleralization of the Cornea - A developmental anomaly in which all or part of the cornea is opaque by tissue that normally covers all of the eyeball except the cornea. In other words, the "white" part of the eye forms over the "colored" part.

Optic Nerve - The nerve that transmits visual information from the retina to the brain.