GHT Logo



A hemangioma is a kind of birthmark on infants. They are commonly called “strawberry marks,” are bright red, and usually show up on the head, face, chest, or back at birth or within the first month of life. They may continue to grow until about 5 to 6 months of age, then fade and flatten as your infant grows and ages. Most finish shrinking by five years of age. Between 4 and 5% of all infants get hemangiomas; however, they are more common in white, female, twin, low-birth, or preterm babies.

Three Kinds of Hemangiomas

Hemangiomas are clusters of blood vessels that can range in size and appearance. Some hemangiomas are small, while others can be large or rubbery.

  • Superficial: Bright red; looks like the surface of a berry
  • Deep: Blue tint; forms under the skin, making skin look swollen
  • Mixed: Combination of superficial and deep


What if I think my baby has a hemangioma?

Historically, we recommended that parents wait and see how their infants’ hemangiomas developed; however, this is no longer recommended. Contact your pediatric healthcare provider if you think your baby has a hemangioma. If you are able, send a photo of your baby’s mark to your provider and schedule a visit. Important information to share with your provider includes an image, size, location, and number. For example:

“My baby has one large, red bump on the right side of their forward, 1 inch by 0.5 inches.”


Hemangioma Treatment

Most hemangiomas will fade and flatten on their own. However, in some cases, a hemangioma needs to be treated. Depending on the placement (e.g., near the eyes or nose), it can impact your child’s normal function. Some hemangiomas can cause skin breakdown and open sores. Also, they can cause permanent changes to the skin that distorts growth. Hemangiomas can also occur internally.

Indications for TreatmentHemangioma: A baby's bare back with a bright red mark exposed above a white blanket or diaper. The red mark is irregular in size.

  • Eyes: Affect vision; may cause disfigurement
  • Nose: May cause disfigurement; block breathing
  • Ears: May cause disfigurement; impact hearing
  • Lips, cheeks, or neck: Increased risk of skin breakdown
  • Chin and jaw: High risk of scarring; may cause disfigurement
  • Five+ in any location: Associated with liver masses
  • Arms: Increased risk of skin breakdown; may cause permanent skin changes
  • Groin: Increased risk of skin breakdown
  • Lower back: Increased risk of skin breakdown; may indicate underlying anomalies

Some topical medications or steroid injections can slow or stop the growth of a smaller, localized hemangioma. In rare cases, a beta-blocker that typically treats high blood pressure, or oral steroids, are used to treat hemangiomas. Finally, surgery or laser treatment can be used for extreme cases.

Your provider may also refer you to a pediatric dermatologist.

For questions or comments, please respond to this post or contact us!

Recent Posts

Holistic Care Blog

Lice on the Mind

What are lice?  Adult head lice are 2-3mm long parasitic insects that live on human heads and necks and feed off our blood. The word

Read More »
Holistic Care Blog

Sprains & Strains

Sprains & Strains Sprains and strains are common soft-tissue sports injuries in children. These injuries are used to describe damage to tissues around the joints.

Read More »
Cartoon of a woman with a thermometer in her mouth, her hand on her head.
Holistic Care Blog

Febrile Seizures

What are febrile seizures? A febrile seizure is a type of seizure that occurs in children with fevers. Febrile seizures are uncommon, affecting only 3

Read More »
Holistic Care Blog


Colic describes excessive crying and fussiness in infants. Babies with colic are difficult to soothe and may have difficulty sleeping. Colic is more common during

Read More »
Holistic Care Blog

Bites and Stings

The freedom of summer brings with it many bites and stings that are usually harmless if a tad painful. They will usually go away on

Read More »
Holistic Care Blog


Constipation Many think that constipation is a time-related ailment, but this is not the case. Your child may go two or three days without pooping

Read More »