Treatment of superficial cutaneous vascular lesions: experience with the KTP 532 nm laser

Lasers Med Sci. 2004;19(1):1-5. doi: 10.1007/s10103-004-0294-x. Epub 2004 Apr 14.


Whilst most facial telangiectasias respond well to short-pulse-duration pulsed dye laser therapy, studies have shown that for the treatment of larger vessels these short-duration pulses are sub-optimal. Long-pulse frequency-doubled neodymium:YAG lasers have been introduced with pulse durations ranging from 1-50 ms and treatment beam diameters of up to 4 mm. We report the results of KTP/532 nm laser treatment for superficial vascular skin lesions. The aim was to determine the efficacy of the KTP/532 nm laser in the treatment of superficial cutaneous vascular lesions at a regional dermatology centre in a 2 year retrospective analysis. Patients were referred from general dermatology clinics to a purpose-built laser facility. A test dose was performed at the initial consultation and thereafter patients were reviewed and treated at 6 week intervals. Outcome was graded into five classifications by the patient and operator independently based on photographic records: clear, marked improvement, partial response, poor response, and no change or worsening. Over the 2 year period, 204 patients with 246 diagnoses were treated [156 female; median age 41 (range 1-74) years; Fitzpatrick skin types I-III]. Equal numbers of spider angioma (102) and facial telangiectasia (102) were treated. Of those patients who completed treatment and follow up, 57/58 (98%) of spider angiomas and 44/49 (90%) of facial telangiectasia markedly improved or cleared. Satisfactory treatment outcomes, with one clearance and two partial responses, occurred in three of five patients with port-wine stain. Few patients experienced adverse effects: two declined further treatment due to pain, and a small area of minimal superficial scarring developed in one case. Two patients developed mild persistent post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation, and one subject experienced an episode of acute facial erythema, swelling and blistering after one treatment. The KTP/532 nm frequency-doubled neodymium:YAG laser is a safe and effective treatment for common superficial cutaneous vascular lesions in patients with Fitzpatrick skin types I-III.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Facial Dermatoses / radiotherapy*
  • Facial Neoplasms / radiotherapy*
  • Female
  • Hemangioma / radiotherapy*
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Low-Level Light Therapy / adverse effects
  • Low-Level Light Therapy / methods*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Telangiectasis / radiotherapy*
  • Treatment Outcome