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The Vascular Birthmarks Foundation (VBF) Announces Groundbreaking Laser Guidelines Project

 New Guidelines Establish Uniform Standards Worldwide to Improve Laser Treatment Outcomes for Those Affected by Vascular Birthmarks, Anomalies, and/or Related Syndromes (VBARS)

As a result of this project, Linda Rozell-Shannon, Ph.D., President and Founder of the VBF, received the Presidential Citation Award from Dr Paul Friedman, President of the ASLMS

LATHAM, NY, April 18, 2023—The Vascular Birthmarks Foundation (VBF) is excited to announce the conclusion of a joint project between Linda Rozell-Shannon, Ph.D., President and Founder of the VBF, and the American Society for Laser Medicine and Surgery, Inc. (ASLMS), the leading society in the world for laser medicine. 

The laser guidelines project was initiated by Dr. Linda to improve laser treatment outcomes on vascular birthmarks and to establish uniform standards worldwide. Not only was the project launch a success, but it resulted in Dr. Linda receiving the Presidential Citation Award from Paul Friedman, M.D., the 2022-2023 President of the ASLMS.

According to Dr. Linda, during the past 5 years–as more and more babies were receiving laser treatments for a vascular birthmark–she began to notice inconsistencies in outcomes by laser doctors.

“I saw burns, ulcerations, scars, over treatment, under treatment, and incomplete laser treatments,” said Dr. Linda. “Some actually looked worse after treatment.”

Dr. Friedman, who is VBF’s current Physician of the Year, co-managed this project with Dr. Linda. According to Dr. Linda, Dr. Friedman had been working with and learning from Roy Geronemus, M.D., Director of the Laser & Skin Surgery Center of New York, for 25 years. The three had a meeting to discuss what could be done about these bad outcomes, and a team was created that worked together to establish the main core best practices for using lasers to treat cutaneous vascular birthmarks.

“These guidelines will hopefully result in less adverse outcomes and contribute to an improvement in the treatment and healing process for patients treated with a laser for a vascular birthmark,” said Dr. Linda.

There were in-person working meetings and many Zoom sessions, but the project was finished and presented by Dr. Linda and Dr. Friedman at the ASLMS Annual Meeting in Arizona on April 13, 2023.

“I want to publicly thank Dr. Friedman and Dr. Geronemus for working in conjunction with me (VBF) to make the vision for these guidelines a reality,” said Dr. Linda. “Without them, this would not have happened, and a major thanks to the consensus team, the ASLMS, and to Candela Medical for sponsoring our project meeting in Boston.” 

For the groundbreaking project, more than 30 consensus statements were successfully completed by Dr. Linda and the team of the top laser experts in the world. This week, Dr. Paul Friedman, the VBF Expert and President of the ASLMS, made these consensus statements the first ever guidelines in the ASLMS’ 42-year history. They were also published officially on the ASLMS website, free for all members. This booklet, which contains these consensus statements, is now on the VBF website.

Hard copies are available for a donation of $25 or more at www.birthmark.org/donate. To download a free PDF version of the laser guidelines, visit: www.birthmark.org/informationalbooklets 

About the Vascular Birthmarks Foundation
The Vascular Birthmarks Foundation (VBF) is an international charitable organization that networks families affected by a vascular birthmark, tumor, or syndrome to the appropriate medical professionals for evaluation and/or treatment, provides informational resources as well as sponsors physician education, mobilizes medical missions trips, and supports research and programs that promote acceptance for individuals with birthmarks. VBF has networked over 125,000 children and adults into treatment since1994. Established in 1994, by Founder and President, Linda Rozell-Shannon, Ph.D., VBF is the number one vascular birthmarks foundation in the world for patient education. For more information about vascular birthmarks, tumors or anomalies and treatment options, please visit www.birthmark.org. To support the VBF, visit www.birthmark.org/donate.

About ASLMS
The American Society for Laser Medicine and Surgery, Inc. (ASLMS) was founded in 1980 and is the world’s largest professional organization dedicated to promoting research, education and high standards of clinical care in the field of medical laser and energy-based applications.

Media Relations:
Gina Rothe
Marketing & Communications Manager
gina@birthmark.org
www.birthmark.org 

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