Venous Lake Removal

Venous lakes are lesions that commonly occur in the upper and lower lips caused by the dilation of tiny blood vessels (veins).

Venous lakes can also appear on the head and neck. Venous lakes can be seen in males and females of any age but are more common in adults that have long term exposure to the sun, smoking or experience trauma to the area.

Venous lakes are dark blue or purple and may be flat or dome shaped. They are often soft and smooth in texture and are usually painless. Venous lakes can be irritating, unsightly, and even bleed if bumped but raise no major cause for concern as they are harmless and not contagious.

Patients often choose to have them removed for cosmetic reasons. Fortunately, these lesions can be effectively eliminated using a vascular laser device. Steven Bengelsdorf, MD is an expert with at treating numerous cosmetic concerns using nonsurgical laser devices. 

Real Patient Results

Venous Lake graphic

Frequently Asked Questions

After your consultation and examination, Dr., Bengelsdorf will be able to visually diagnose the lesion and recommend the best treatment for you. When finger pressure is applied to a venous lake, the blood inside the venous lake will be forced outwards which causes the venous lake to flatten and even almost disappear. Once the pressure is released, the venous lake will return to its original appearance.
The most effective treatment for venous lakes is a long pulse Nd-YAG or a Pulsed Dye Laser. The laser targets the blood inside the dilated vessel to destroy the vein so it can be reabsorbed and flushed out by the body. This treatment is performed in our office with no anesthesia, although topical or local anesthetic may be administered to some patients.
Although some physicians may choose to perform a surgical procedure or injection sclerotherapy, Dr. Bengelsdorf has found that a laser treatment is the gold standard for removal. Laser causes little to no scarring with less downtime and a more successful clinical outcome. With laser, there is also a minimal chance of lesion recurrence.
In some cases, the treatment area may take a few days to completely heal following the laser treatment. Patients can expect to see several days of crusting and scabbing as the treatment area heals. The area may be a bit tender and swollen and often, the lesion looks worse before it looks better. Patients are advised to use an ointment like Aquaphor to keep the area moist during the healing period.
The treatment itself takes less than 10 minutes and is typically a couple pulses. It is extremely quick and there may be a warm sensation, but it subsides very quickly.
One treatment is generally sufficient for achieving a full result. For most lesions, one treatment is all that is required. The treatment is typically just a few minutes. For larger lesions, occasionally more than one treatment is required.
Long pulse Nd-YAG (GentleYAG) and Pulsed Dye (VBeam Perfecta) lasers are the treatments of choice. A laser will target the lesion with a precise wavelength of light and destroy it with minimal effect on the surrounding area.
Patients notice an immediate improvement after the venous lake treatment. It may take a few days to weeks to see the full effects of treatment due to the healing process.
Venous lakes may be prevented by applying sunscreen liberally before going out in the sun for extended periods.


As a member of the American College of Surgeons, American Academy of Cosmetic Surgery, and American Society for Laser Medicine, Dr. Bengelsdorf has the training, experience, and technology to ensure a safe and successful treatment customized for you.