Hemangioma Treatment

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A hemangioma is a type of birthmark and non-cancerous growth that occurs at the time of birth or during the first few weeks. This bright red growth often appears as a rubber bump and consists of a collection of blood vessels under the skin.

Although hemangiomas can occur anywhere on the body, these growths most commonly appear on the scalp, face, chest, and back.

What Causes Hemangiomas?

The apparent reason behind the formation of hemangiomas is the unusual overgrowth and accumulation of blood vessels at a certain skin depth. Scientists believe that this problem occurs due to the particular proteins produced in the placenta when the baby is in the womb. But what actually causes those blood vessels to group like this is not yet known.

Types of Hemangiomas

Hemangiomas are classified into three main types.

  • Superficial: These hemangiomas appear flat at the start but become bright red with an uneven, raised surface on the skin.
  • Deep: These deep-rooted hemangiomas appear as bluish-purple growths. These lesions do not have a raised surface.
  • Mixed or Combined: These growths show attributes of both superficial and deep hemangiomas.

Another appearance-based classification of hemangiomas also exists. Here is a brief overview of this classification.

  1. Strawberry hemangioma: This benign growth is caused by an accumulation of tiny blood vessels under the skin. These hemangiomas are usually present at birth or may develop during infancy.
  2. Cavernous Hemangioma: These birthmarks typically consist of thin-walled capillaries tightly packed in a particular skin area. For this reason, these growths are more prone to bleeding than the surrounding skin. The size of cavernous hemangioma ranges from a fraction of an inch to that of a dime.
  3. Cherry Hemangioma: These cherry-red papules or macules appear due to vascular proliferation in the cutaneous layer. This skin growth tends to enlarge over time, eventually taking the shape of a dome with small cherry-red or deep-purple papules all over its surface.

What are the treatment options for hemangioma?

You won’t usually need any treatment for a small, single hemangioma. It will likely subside without any medical intervention. However, hemangiomas that develop into ulcerations or sores or become a cosmetic concern may require treatment.

At EuroMed Clinic Dubai, we offer the following treatments to reduce hemangiomas.

Beta-Blockers

  • Oral propranolol: This medication aims to dissolve a hemangioma systemically.
  • Topical Beta-Blockers: These medications are ideal for superficial hemangiomas. They may also help treat small-sized ulcerated hemangiomas.

Corticosteroid Medication

Corticosteroids for hemangiomas are mainly steroid medications injected into the lesion to stop inflammation and reduce its growth.

Laser Treatment

Laser treatment is a viable option to reduce hemangiomas present in the top skin layers. This treatment starts with the application of a topical anesthetic solution. Then, the laser technician directs the laser beam to the lesion, reducing the appearance of visible blood vessels. Multiple laser sessions may be required to achieve the desired results.

Surgery

Surgery is generally considered when a cavernous hemangioma starts destroying healthy skin tissues in the surroundings. Hemangiomas that cause painful symptoms may also lead your doctor to choose the surgical option.

The procedure of surgically removing a hemangioma involves excision. Before starting the treatment, the surgeon administers general anesthesia to put you to sleep. Then, they make an incision in the skin to remove the tumor.

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Hemangiomas Post-Treatment Care

All hemangiomas treatment options, except surgery, lead to minimal recovery durations. Hence, you can resume your daily activities right after these treatments. However, taking care of the treated area is imperative to the treatment’s success.

  • Laser treatment: Laser treatment doesn’t cause burns or other skin issues. However, it does increase your skin’s sensitivity to hot and cold. Therefore, it is imperative not to go out in the sun unprotected for a few days after laser therapy. You can aid healing by applying prescribed moisturizers and sunblock. Make sure not to use any harsh skin product until your skin has fully recovered from the treatment.
  • Surgery: Surgery is the quickest route to removing the hemangioma lesion, but it carries the risk of infections due to wounds and stitching involved in the process. Therefore, special care must be practiced to keep the treated site disinfected. Ensure to apply bandages and ointments according to the doctor’s instructions. Do not skip oral medications if your doctor has prescribed any. And lastly, book a follow-up consultation after six weeks to ensure that you are well on a path to a seamless recovery.

Hemangioma Treatment FAQs

When does a hemangioma need treatment?

Baby’s hemangiomas do not usually need treatment because they often subside without medical intervention. However, children who continue to carry these stains by the age of 10 may need treatment. The hemangioma treatment becomes necessary if it interferes with breathing, vision, or other body functions.

Is hemangioma serious?

Hemangiomas can be severe or life-threatening if they obstruct airways. Lesions that cause excessive bleeding are also serious.

How long does hemangioma treatment take?

This generally depends on the type of treatment selected. Medications take months to resolve hemangiomas. Laser therapy can take weeks to dissolve extra vessels in these lesions. And surgery removes the lesion in one session.

How much does it cost to remove hemangiomas?

The cost of treating hemangiomas mainly depends on the type of lesions and the body area they cover. Treatment costs will go up with more hemangiomas or more stubborn lesions.

Do hemangiomas grow back?

Yes, a hemangioma can grow back after the treatment, although its likelihood is not relatively high.

Schedule a Consultation

Hemangiomas can be a significant cause of concern for people who care about their aesthetics and health. Fortunately, you can get this problem treated with the help of a qualified practitioner. At EuroMed Clinic Dubai, our highly skilled dermatologists use their knowledge and expertise to rid you of these vascular growths and give you a flawless skin appearance. For more information or to book a consultation, please fill out the form below.

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    Dr. Fazeela Abbasi MD

    Physician Specialist Dermatology

    Dr. Fazeela Abbasi has been in the field of dermatology since 2003. She is a DHA-licensed dermatologist specializing in advanced laser techniques, Botox, PRP therapy, rosacea treatment, etc.

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