Assessment of pulsed-dye laser therapy for pediatric cutaneous vascular anomalies

Javad A. Sajan, Robert Tibesar, Noel Jabbour, Timothy Lander, Peter Hilger, James Sidman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


IMPORTANCE Although facial vascular malformations are often treated by facial plastic surgeons, no reliable validated assessment tool exists for surgeons to assess results. OBJECTIVES To use our assessment tool to analyze results from pulsed-dye laser therapy used for pediatric facial vascular malformations, and to determine interrater reliability of our assessment tool in a standard clinical environment without the use of professional photography. DESIGN A blinded retrospective review of pediatric patients who underwent pulsed-dye laser therapy for treatment of hemangiomas of infancy (HOIs) and port-wine stains. Three pediatric otolaryngologists and facial plastic surgeons independently rated all of the pictures using our assessment tool. SETTING Tertiary care pediatric hospital. RESULTS Pulsed-dye laser therapy was performed in 22 patients, 17 with HOIs and 5 with port-wine stains. Patients with HOIs treated only by pulsed-dye laser showed, on average, a 50% to 75%improvement in color, 1%to 24%, improvement in thickness, and 1% to 24% improvement in size of the lesion. Eight patients with HOIs underwent surgery after laser therapy, and of these, 100% saw improvement in color, thickness, and size. Port-wine stains showed a 1%to 24%improvement in color and no improvement in thickness or size. Interrater reliability for questions 1 to 6 was 0.92, 0.92, 0.93, 0.91, 0.70, and 0.10, respectively. CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE Currently, no standardized or validated methods exist to evaluate results from intervention of pediatric facial HOIs and port-wine stains. Our assessment tool is reliable to assess patients with HOIs and port-wine stains who undergo pulsed-dye laser therapy and surgical reconstruction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)434-438
Number of pages5
JournalJAMA Facial Plastic Surgery
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 2013


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