Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
Abstract Infantile hemangiomas affect about 5% (3% – 8%) of the population, showing a predilection for the face. After a phase of rapid enlargement between the 3rd and the 9th month of life, 70% regress by the age of six after a period of stability. 43% – 60% of the children with eye lid hemangiomas develop strabismic, anisometropic, or deprivation amblyopia. Previous studies found the majority of cases resulting from anisometropia (especially asymmetric astigmatism) rather than strabism or occlusion of the visual axis. Several methods of treatment — surgical excision, irradiation, sclerosing agents, systemic steroids, ligation, cryotherapy — have been used but all with a risk of local or systemic complications. Local injections of steroids are a simple method of therapy with a high rate of resolution of hemangiomas, but still with a high degree of bad visual output because of persistent astigmatism. In four children with asymmetric astigmatism (axis of astigmatism towards the hemangioma) in which the injection was given at the beginning of the phase of enlargement, amblyopia could be avoided by preventing corneal steepening from becoming permanent.
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