A retrospective study to classify surgical indications for infantile hemangiomas

Andrew H.Y. Lee, Krista L. Hardy, David Goltsman, Peter Liou, Maria C. Garzon, Christine H. Rohde, June K. Wu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Infantile hemangiomas (IHs) spontaneously involute, but some leave contour deformities necessitating surgical correction. There is a paucity of data reviewing predictive risk factors associated with a need for surgery to guide clinicians when counseling parents. Patients undergoing IH resection by a single surgeon from August 2004 to August 2011 were reviewed to determine patient (age, gender, birth history) and IH characteristics (size, location) associated with surgical intervention. Data were compared to published data from the Hemangioma Investigator Group (HIG). Statistical analysis was performed using Student's t-test, odds ratio, and logistic regression analysis. Out of 196 referred patients, 112 underwent surgery. There was a female preponderance (3.5:1). Two-thirds of patients (64.9%) first presented to the surgeon at &2 years of age, but most underwent surgery between 2 and 3 years (52.7%; average lag time, 11 months). 18 patients underwent surgery at ≤;1 year of age. IH patients with preterm birth history had increased risk for needing surgical intervention (odds ratio 2.124, CI 1.31-3.44; p < 0.0012). A majority (84.7%) of resected IHs were located on the head or neck, significantly higher than the distribution from the HIG data (62.2%; p < 0.0001). Resected head and neck IHs were smaller than those below the neck (average, 8.85 cm2 vs. 22.35 cm2, p = 0.017). Preterm birth is associated with higher risk for requiring surgical intervention. IHs on the head and neck are more likely to be removed when compared to those below the neck, and at a smaller size threshold.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1215-1221
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgery
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Infantile hemangioma
  • Preterm infants
  • Retrospective analysis
  • Surgical indication

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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