Intralesional photocoagulation of periorbital hemangiomas

Bruce M. Achauer, Cheng Jen Chang, Victoria M. VanderKam, Andrew Boyko

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51 Citations (Scopus)


The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of intralesional bare fiber photocoagulation with the KTP and Nd:YAG lasers on periorbital hemangiomas of infancy. Initial reports by Apfelberg and Gregory suggest that intralesional laser therapy may have a role in the treatment of hemangiomas. Intralesional photocoagulation may be preferred to superficial laser treatment for several reasons. It may decrease cutaneous skin damage and more effectively reduce bulky, deep lesions. Twenty-three patients with periorbital hemangiomas were treated (KTP, n = 7; Nd:YAG, n = 16). An 18-g Angiocath was placed into the lesion to pass the fiber through. Laser energy was delivered by means of a 0.6-mm bare fiber at 10 to 15 J (KTP) or 7 J (Nd:YAG). Treatments were done under general anesthesia. Patients were followed closely for 1 month and then monthly to assess results and complications. Results are as follows: 61 percent demonstrated 50-percent or more reduction at 3 months; 22 percent demonstrated 50-percent or more reduction in 3 to 8 months, i.e., 83 percent of patients had 50-percent or more reduction within 8 months. To achieve these results, two patients required two treatments. The remaining 17 percent had 10-to 14-percent reduction at 1 to 3 months. Two of these patients had two treatments. A subgroup of patients had a very dramatic response. Thirty-five percent (8 of 23) had 50- to 90-percent reduction in 1 month. It is unclear why these patients responded so dramatically. We expected some ulceration during the healing phase. Seventeen percent developed ulceration. Complications were limited (4 percent) to one wound infection. Intralesional photocoagulation treatment with the KTP and Nd:YAG lasers is effective and safe for the treatment of periorbital hemangiomas in the majority of patients with minimal complications. Further study is necessary to identify factors that result in dramatic or limited responses.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)11-19
Number of pages9
JournalPlastic and Reconstructive Surgery
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 1999
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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