Port-wine stains are often described as permanent birthmarks the initially appear to be pinkish in color during the earliest stages of childhood, but eventually become a darker red or purple as the child grows. These birthmarks are believed to be caused by capillary malformations and frequently appear on the face and neck, but have also been known to appear in other parts of the body as well. The affected areas become slightly thickened and may develop into an uneven and pebbled patch over time. There have been cases when port-wine stains have been reported to fade with time, but most remain all through the patient’s life, posing potentially severe impacts on the child’s social and psychological development.
Several treatment processes are being used to manage port-wine stains and this includes surgery, cryotherapy, radiation therapy, and even tattooing. Laser treatments are one of the most effective techniques used to destroy the capillaries that are causing the birthmark. This method is able to gradually lighten or reduce redness of the birthmark without posing any significant damage to the patient’s skin. Treatment for port-wine stains is recommended to be administered before the child is a year old. Frequent treatments are ideal so that the marks could begin to disappear before the child reaches the school-age.
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