Port wine birthmarks | NHS

Port wine birthmarks | NHS


A port wine stain is a birthmark
which is red, flat, present at birth, in about three per thousand people. And is permanent unless treated. A lot of children
call it their special mark. Sometimes it’s an angel’s kiss. Abigail’s birthmark was quite extensive over most of the side of her face,
up to her eye, over to her ear
and down to her mouth. Port wine stains
always start off flat, they can be anywhere on the skin, as a rule the majority are on the face. We weren’t worried. They said, “It’s
a birthmark, you don’t need to worry.” “The paediatric clinic
will tell you more about it.” There are no known causes
of port wine stains, it’s just something that happens. It was after the first appointment that you start finding out
the complications and you go on the internet
and start googling, and you don’t know
what you’re dealing with. There is a syndrome
called Sturge-Weber syndrome where if the port wine stain
is over the forehead it’s worth getting an MRI of the brain
just to check that out. There’s also glaucoma associated
with port wine stains around the eye. It wasn’t till after we’d been to see
Great Ormond Street and they had looked into her eyes and said they were sure there was
nothing on the back of her eye and that would mean
there was nothing anywhere else, that we felt a little bit more happy,
more comfortable with what was going on. Port wine stains
can be treated well with a laser. We use pulse-dye lasers. It’s a yellow light which gets
absorbed by the blood vessels and very slowly shuts them off
to make them lighter. Laser surgery was an option
but then there’s the complications of having a general anaesthetic,
which was the big worry. We never guarantee that we’ll get rid
of port wine stains with the laser, but the chances are that you’ll be able
to fade it by a good 70% or more. The surgery’s been very successful and I was surprised how
quickly the laser dots went away. When she first came home
they were very dark, but they start breaking down
almost immediately. And within two weeks they had faded to the point where you couldn’t
really see them any more. Port wine stains don’t get larger, they can however thicken and darken
if they’re not treated. You’re worried about them
looking different and being different and how that’s
going to affect them at school, because kids can be cruel and you
don’t know how they’ll be affected. You don’t know what their personality’s
like and how they’ll deal with it. If the parents are confident and they don’t show that they’re
really concerned about the birthmark, then the children tend to be
quite confident too. If they’re taught how to respond
to people asking about it, they tend to do much better. If laser treatment isn’t an option
or doesn’t do very well, then there is always
the skin camouflage make-up, which can be taught by The Red Cross or certain people in hospitals
can teach you how to do it. The support group were helpful, to meet other people who’d been
through the same sort of thing. Once we’d met with doctors
and discussed things, I felt much more comfortable
with what we were dealing with.

13 Comments

  • Jaqen H´Ghar says:

    good video, i myself have a little red devil the size of a fingernail on my head. does it this procdure ( spelling -.-) cost anything? due to that the actuel mark doesn not bother me in any way just that i want it removed

  • randall hamm says:

    I've been through the laser treatment. Seeing her picture after the surgery brings back alot of memories.

  • RAJAN SWAMI says:

    hi i am rajan from india….i have port wine stain on my left side of face starting from the forehead to the upper lips and its intraoral too. its really difficult to live with these stains….specially wn u r kid…. other kids make ur names …u feel abnormal….etc….i always have that in my mind that i am normal but somewhere in my mind i know that i am not,,,,,i dont look like others……i thought now wn i am

  • RAJAN SWAMI says:

    doing phd now the people criteria will change but thats not….people still have same problem with this…..i never wanted to erase that as this become my part of life…i always come out of people by this…and most importantly i always get v good friends because of that who believe in me not in my face or attitude.

  • RAJAN SWAMI says:

    ….but today only i had some feeling that "why not erase it " but its too expensive …but let see wt god have for me………ciao……..i will not say that i like people with this same mark but really feeling that im not alone …….

  • 333badcat says:

    god i have this red sick pimple thing on my neck and my mom says i neeed to go see a dermitolichest to get it removed :/

  • wael waley says:

    my entire left arm and frontal neck is covered with these, aside from it I have also on my face….its really making my life a lot harder especially when ur at a teenager stage….:(
    its really killing me inside but what else can i do but accept it that im diff. from others physically…

  • Frances Jones says:

    Have you considered the laser treatment?

  • Adam Efimoff says:

    I got bashed in 2006 and had a black eye from people that stole my wallet. No one cared about they were more worried I got bashed. I tried to put make up on it but gave up. It was really silly of me to consider it because friends will like you no matter what

  • Holly Glenister says:

    i have a pigmented birth mark goes half of my face and on the left side and around my eye because of this i have problems with my eyes and many people stare and that i have been to London hospital for laser they say i can't doing any thing because im young and it will grow back and i wear make up for now any ideas?x

  • Tif Fani says:

    I grow up with port-wine stain birthmark. I have few dots on my shoulder (friends teased me it’s a kiss mark lol/yikes), I have it my on my right arm, entire right arm

    (all fingers), I have it on my back, I have 2 dots that looks like kiss mark 3-4”
    above my boob (can’t wear lower neckline top or V cut shirt, few people already
    teased me if it’s a kiss mark yikes), I have it entire my right boob, I have it
    on my left butt, I have it on my left thigh and lower left leg. I called so
    many names when I was young (alien, 101 dalmatian, ghost, cursed and etc.) It
    was tough when I was a teen, I can't wear normal teen girls’ clothes like
    shorts or skirt, sleeveless or short sleeve shirts. I hated those stares from
    people, I wish they ask instead. Some thinks it's a contagious disease, I can
    tell if they don’t want to sit with me in public transportation (so I bought a
    car when I was able to). It sucks!!! I did not have a normal childhood because
    of it but oh well… what can I do? (not rich to do laser). My self confidence was
    affected for sure but I learned to be strong and to ignore it, act as if I was fine.
    It’s tiring though, I just want to live a simple/normal life. Haissst!

  • BRM NIYAH says:

    My port wine stain goes all the way up my leg almost to my back🤦🏽‍♀️

  • Cơ Khí Nông Nghiệp says:

    Can anyone tell me if laser treatment is done in the hairy areas, the hair on those areas can regrow normally?

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