Birthmarks, or nevi, can be often be discreet and fade over time without treatment, however some birthmarks are permanent and unsightly, creating cosmetic concerns for those affected. Some birthmarks may even serve as indicators of underlying health issues.
Two main types of birthmarks include:
- Vascular birthmarks
- Pigmented birthmarks
Vascular birthmarks, such as hemangiomas, macular stains, or port wine stains, are the result of abnormal blood vessels.
Pigmented birthmarks, such as moles, Mongolian spots, or café au lait marks, are the result of pigmentation inconsistencies.
A birthmark, as its name suggests, is a marking on the skin that is present at birth or appears shortly thereafter. Although the exact cause of these skin irregularities is unknown, some speculate that the cause is an abnormal event that takes place in the cells during embryonic development.
Although most birthmarks are harmless, many dermatologists recommend getting them checked to ensure there isn't an underlying disorder. It may be necessary to treat a vascular birthmark if it:
- Interferes with normal activity
- Causes dissatisfaction with your appearance
The cost of birthmark treatment varies depending on the size of the birthmark. Multiple treatments may be needed to remove or diminish a birthmark. Dermatologists often suggest doing a “test spot” birthmark treatment, which means treating a small area of the birthmark to see how it responds prior to scheduling a series of laser treatments.