A birthmark is a congenital, benign irregularity on the skin which is present at birth or appears shortly after birth, usually in the first month. They can occur anywhere on the skin. Birthmarks are caused by an overgrowth of blood vessels, melanocytes, smooth muscle, fat, fibroblasts or keratinocytes. They are thought to occur as a result of a localized imbalance in factors controlling the development and migration of skin cells.

Birthmarks are divided into two types. 

1)Pigmented birthmarks  

2)Vascular birthmarks     

Generally, they are very benign when they only involve the skin but if they tend to involve the brain tissue, meninges, spinal cord, eyes, muscle fibres it may show some serious effects. Many times patient may suffer from seizures, learning disabilities, vision problems, limb asymmetry, facial asymmetry etc.

Few birthmarks are harmless and do not require treatment. Pigmented marks can resolve on their own over time in some cases.Vascular birthmarks may require reduction or removal for cosmetic reasons. 

Treatments include:

1) Oral or injected steroids, 

2) Dermatological lasers to reduce size and/or colour

3) Sclerotherapy 

4) Dermatologic surgery- excision, radio frequency removal  

Different lasers are used for different type of birthmark:

1) Pigmented lesions: Long-pulsed Nd: Yag laser, Q- Switched Nd: Yag laser 

2) Vascular lesions: Pulsed dye laser, Intense pulse light laser 

Multiple sessions are required before visible improvement is seen. The treatment response and percentage of resolution depending on the extent of involvement, duration and depth of the mark, and involvement of the underlying tissue.

Birthmarks such as superficial moles can be completely removed with the simple procedure called radiofrequency removal in only one or two sessions. Deeper but smaller sized moles can be completely excised in one session. Deeper and larger moles can be systemically excised in multiple sessions 

PULSED DYE LASER - It is very effective but rarely available laser due to its enormous cost. Only 5-6 machines are available in all over India. Fortunately, our clinic has all the lasers and other treatment modalities under one roof.Helping you through the birthmark journey.