Lasers in Medical Science

, Volume 29, Issue 4, pp 1365–1370 | Cite as

Variables affecting clinical response to treatment of facial port-wine stains by flash lamp-pumped pulsed dye laser: the importance of looking beyond the skin

  • Pier Luca Bencini
  • Simone Cazzaniga
  • Michela Gianna Galimberti
  • Cristina Zane
  • Luigi Naldi
Original Article


The response of port-wine stains (PWS) to conventional laser treatment in adults is difficult to predict. To assess the influence of local or systemic hemodynamic variables on the clearance of PWS by using flash lamp-pumped pulsed (FLPP) dye laser. All consecutive patients ages 18 years or older undergoing laser treatment for a facial PWS were eligible. Laser sessions were scheduled every 8 weeks. All patients were evaluated based on a standard scale with four evaluation categories, from no or minimal improvement to total or almost total clearance. Clearance was achieved by 50.1 % (95 % confidence interval 35.6–64.7) of patients after a maximum of 15 treatment sessions. In multivariate analysis, increased age, a newly described Type III capillaroscopic pattern, and presence of lesions in dermatome V2 were all associated with a reduced clinical response to treatment. In a model restricted to demographic pattern and patient characteristics, arterial hypertension was also associated with a lower clinical response. A strong association was found between arterial hypertension and the Type III capillaroscopic pattern. Age, arterial hypertension, capillaroscopic pattern, and body location should be considered when planning laser treatment of PWS.


Port-wine stains (PWS) Flash lamp-pumped pulsed (FLPP) dye laser Treatment Capillaroscopic pattern Hemodynamic variables Cohort study 


Conflict of interest


Financial disclosure

None reported


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Pier Luca Bencini
    • 1
  • Simone Cazzaniga
    • 2
  • Michela Gianna Galimberti
    • 1
  • Cristina Zane
    • 3
  • Luigi Naldi
    • 2
    • 4
    • 5
  1. 1.Istituto di Chirurgia e Laserchirurgia in Dermatologia (I.C.L.I.D.)MilanoItaly
  2. 2.Centro Studi GISED, Fondazione per la Ricerca Ospedale MaggioreBergamoItaly
  3. 3.Clinica DermatologicaSpedali CiviliBresciaItaly
  4. 4.Italian High Tech Network in Dermatological SciencesMilanoItaly
  5. 5.Unità di DermatologiaAzienda Ospedaliera papa Giovanni XXIIIBergamoItaly

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