The obliteration of nevus flammeus (port-wine stain) presents a problem for which neither surgical excision nor the various methods of nonsurgical treatment have provided a satisfactory solution. The psychological importance of nevus flammeus to the person who bears this birthmark is frequently so great as to have adverse effects on his personality and social adjustment. It is, therefore, especially unfortunate that the methods of treatment in general use fail to bring about the necessary cosmetic obliteration of this congenital deformity.
The nonsurgical procedures that have been employed include electrodesiccation, cauterization, distance application of ultraviolet light, and use of carbon dioxide snow, liquid air, ignipuncture, electrolysis, ultraviolet therapy with a Kromayer lamp, x-ray therapy, or radium therapy. All these methods must be applied to the lesion through the overlying skin, with consequent injury to or destruction of the skin and subcutaneous tissue. Thus, the nevus flammeus is replaced by scarring, which