Portwine Stain Birthmarks

A portwine stain birthmark is a red, pink or purple birthmark made up of layers of blood vessels.

Laser treatment is a safe and effective way of fading port wine stain birthmarks by shutting down the blood vessels making them far less noticeable.

Laser treatment uses a narrow beam of light that is absorbed by the red colour in the blood vessels in the port wine stain making it lighter in colour.

The pulse dye laser is the treatment of choice for portwine stain birthmark treatment. Multiple treatments with the pulse dye laser are usually required for maximum portwine birthmark fading.

Your skin will need to be looked after carefully for two to three weeks after each appointment. You may also need to wear a high factor sunblock on the area to be treated for the whole course of the treatment. However, our specialist will advise you on how to look after your skin.

Before (left) and after (right) laser treatment for birthmarks.

Portwine stain laser treatment  (right) before (left) after

There is no routine NHS funding for laser treatment but patients with large facial portwine stains will be considered for exceptional funding and children with large facial birthmarks are usually funded. Please discuss this with your GP who may be able to apply to the Exceptional Funding Panel on your behalf. A referral letter from your GP or a hospital specialist, with funding approval, is required for all NHS patients.

If you are not eligible for NHS funding you can opt to self-fund your treatment here at Bristol Laser Centre. An initial consultation, at £120, with our specialist doctor is always required to discuss your specific needs. Portwine stain birthmark laser treatment sessions start from £135 per session.

Contact Bristol Laser Centre

Contact Bristol Laser Centre

To book a consultation call 0117 4141212. Alternatively you can email a question or request a call back.


We have received perfect care, compassionate, professional, understanding and well managed clinically. The use of up to date laser equipment gives us confidence that our daughter Olive is getting the most effective treatment possible. The care we all get as a family from the staff, together with effective treatment from modern equipment makes the whole experience fantastic, we feel very lucky to be under their care.

Bill Hosker