My daughter, Keisha, can be easily identified from other babies of her age through her birthmark which was frequently mistaken as a wound. It started to appear 2 weeks after her birth. It was just a small flat red mark in between her lower left eye and her upper right cheek. Thinking that it was a mosquito bite, I was not worried. Days and weeks passed, the mark grew bigger and more reddish.
Just in time with her first monthly check-up, I seek the help of an expert-her pediatrician for medical advice. Unfortunately, the doctor was not able to give a concrete explanation on what was on my daughter’s face. She only advised me to observe if it will disappear or if it will grow bigger. Feeling dissatisfied with her explanation, I looked for another doctor who can possibly give me a more sound clarification with the lesion on Keisha’s face.
With the help of my husband’s cousin we were able to find a new pediatrician in the name of Dr. Galvez in Taytay, Rizal. According to him, the mark on my daughter’s face is a birthmark called hemangioma. Well, finally, I was enlightened that it was a birthmark. I was not aware that there were birthmarks occurring after birth. And my daughter’s case was one of those. A hemangioma is an abnormal build up of blood vessels in the skin.
It has three types:
1. Nevus flammeus – a macular purple or dark red lesion that is present at birth. It is sometimes called a port-wine stain because ot its deep red color.
2. Cavernous hemangiomas – dilated vascular spaces that do not disappear with time.
3. Strawberry hemangiomas – elevated areas formed by immature capillaries and endothelial cells. Most are present at birth, although, they may appear 2 weeks after birth. They may continue to enlarge from their original size up to 1 year of age. After the first year, they tend to be absorbed and shrink in size. (source: Maternal & Child Health Nursing by Adele Pillitteri)
Categorically speaking, what Keisha has is a strawberry hemangioma. Formation of it is associated with my high estrogen level during pregnancy. But, in contrast with the other types, strawberry hemangiomas tend to lighten and fade with age. With my observation, her birthmark has stopped increasing in size and has already started shrinking. The middle part is not that red anymore unlike before. I will patiently wait until it’s completely gone. But, for now, honestly, I’m not bothered with the red mark on her face . I don’t find my daughter imperfect nor disfigured just because of it. I love her dearly and I’m just thankful to God that I have her in my life.