Failure of propranolol in the treatment of childhood haemangiomas of the head and neck

J. Goswamy, M. P. Rothera, I. A. Bruce

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    Background: Infantile haemangiomas enter a rapid proliferative phase within months of birth, before slowly involuting. Those with the potential for disfigurement or morbidity require intervention. Propranolol has emerged as an effective new treatment modality, with the potential to become the first-line treatment of choice.Methods: Four children with haemangiomas of the head and neck were treated with propranolol at a tertiary referral centre. The size of the haemangioma and the symptoms resulting from airway compromise were monitored.Results: Three of the four children showed a dramatic response to treatment with propranolol. However, one child responded initially but was readmitted with stridor secondary to new haemangioma proliferation.Conclusions: We report a cautionary case in which a subglottic haemangioma developed contemporaneously with propranolol treatment, requiring surgical intervention. This finding highlights the need for regular follow up of treatment response, and the need for monitoring for treatment side effects. © 2011 JLO (1984) Limited.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1164-1172
    Number of pages8
    JournalThe Journal of laryngology and otology
    Issue number11
    Publication statusPublished - Nov 2011


    • Congenital
    • Face
    • hemangiomas
    • Infant
    • Larynx
    • Nose
    • Propranolol


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