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J Dermatol Surg Oncol. 1994 Dec;20(12):808-12.

CO2, argon, and pulsed dye laser treatment of angiofibromas.

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Department of Dermatology, Hospital Ramón y Cajal, Madrid, Spain.



Tuberous sclerosis is a complex disorder of hamartoma formation in many organs, particularly the skin, brain, eye, kidney, and heart. The characteristic skin lesions are angiofibromas (AF), the shagreen patch, periungual fibromas, and "ash-leaf" white macules. Treatment for AF has previously included electrocoagulation, electrodesiccation and curettage, dermabrasion, excision, cryosurgery, and oral 13-cis retinoic acid. Both argon and CO2 lasers have been used in isolated cases to treat AF.


The purpose of this work is the study of the application of three different lasers in the treatment of facial AF.


Ten patients with facial AF were treated with CO2, argon, and pulsed dye lasers. Patients' AF were graded with regard to the size and color of the lesions. A 2-3-cm2 test was assayed on the face of all patients with each laser before performing a complete treatment and in order to choose the best laser.


Results were considered excellent in seven patients and good in three patients, with decrease of erythema and flattening of the AF. Minimal scarring was noted in two patients. Transient erythema was observed in patients treated with the CO2 laser. All patients or their parents considered the treatment cosmetically satisfactory.


We found the CO2 laser to be a better therapeutic tool than the argon laser to treat AF, especially in those patients with multiple and protuberant AF. The argon laser would be more useful in those patients with very red AF and light complexion, and the pulsed dye laser in those with very red and flat AF.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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