Hemangioma Treatment

Many hemangiomas, even with rapid growth, stay relatively small and cause no problems. Since they will eventually resolve, no treatment is needed. A significant minority of hemangiomas cause functional problems or threaten to leave permanent skin changes and require active treatment. Early in life, when hemangiomas have their greatest growth potential, it can be difficult to determine how big they will become, so your child may need to be seen in the clinic more often; as they get older this will be less often.

Reasons for treatment include: ulceration (breakdown of the skin), effect on important structures such as the eye, lip, or nose, psychosocial concerns, or when a hemangioma is so large or growing so rapidly that there is a real risk of leaving permanent scarring.

  • This child's hemangioma was treated with systemic prednisolone from 1—7 months of age.

  • This child's hemangioma was treated with systemic prednisolone from 5 weeks—10 months of age.

  • This infant girl had a rapidly-growing deep hemangioma of the nasal root, which was beginning to obstruct her vision. She was initially treated with oral steroids, which were not effective, so oral propranolol was subsequently started. Marked improvement was noted, as can be seen at 10 months of age (second photo).

  • This lip hemangioma ulcerated and resulted in pain during feeding. The patient was treated with a brief course of oral steroids, as well as oral propranolol, and at 16 months of age (second photo), marked improvement is noted.

  • This right shoulder hemangioma grew rapidly and ulcerated, prompting treatment with some topical medications, which led to complete healing of the ulcerated area.