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Anales del Sistema Sanitario de Navarra

Print version ISSN 1137-6627


SANCHEZ-CARPINTERO, I.; MIHM, M.C.  and  WANER, M.. Laser and intense pulsed light in the treatment of infantile haemangiomas and vascular malformations. Anales Sis San Navarra [online]. 2004, vol.27, suppl.1, pp.103-115. ISSN 1137-6627.

The use of the indications of the laser in treating vascular malformations and infantile haemangiomas is based on the theory of selective photothermolysis, in which the oxyhaemoglobin is the target chromophore on which the light of the laser acts, thus avoiding damage to neighbouring tissues. The pulsed dye laser is the most employed and at present is the treatment of choice in capillary malformations (port-wine stains). A variable response is obtained, with a substantial clearing of the colour of the lesion after several sessions. Application at early ages seems to improve the results. Venous malformations, especially those localised in the mucosa, respond better to the Nd:YAG laser; lymphatic malformations to the CO2 laser. Arteriovenous malformations rarely respond. Use of the pulsed dye laser in the phase of proliferation of the haemangiomas is subject to controversy, except where there is ulceration. A rapid re-epithelialization is obtained in these cases following its use. In the involution phase, patients with residual vascular lesions can benefit from other lasers such as KTP or Nd:YAG. If they show an atrophic surface and scars these complications improve with the CO2 laser or Er:YAG. New treatment modalities are emerging, such as photodynamic therapy, whose efficacy and safety, both in the treatment of haemangiomas and vascular malformations, have yet to be confirmed.

Keywords : Pulsed dye laser; Port-wine stain; Haemangioma; Nd:YAG laser; Vascular malformation.

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