Carbon dioxide laser treatment for Hailey-Hailey disease: A retrospective chart review with patient-reported outcomes

Phillip C. Hochwalt, Kevin N. Christensen, Sean R. Cantwell, Thomas L. Hocker, Clark C. Otley, Jerry D. Brewer, Christopher J. Arpey, Randall K. Roenigk, Christian L. Baum

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Background: Hailey-Hailey disease (HHD) is an autosomal dominant genodermatosis that leads to skin breakdown and blister formation, usually in intertriginous areas. Laser ablation is a known surgical treatment for HHD. Objectives: We report outcomes in a series of patients with HHD treated with carbon dioxide (CO2) laser ablation. Methods: A retrospective chart review of data for 13 patients who underwent CO2 laser ablation for HHD was conducted. Questionnaires assessing effectiveness, pain, healing time, recurrence, new disease, complications, additional ablation, improvement in quality of life (QoL), and overall satisfaction were completed by all patients. Results: All patients had been recalcitrant to previous treatments prior to CO2 laser ablation. Anatomic sites treated and anesthesia techniques for the procedure varied. The mean±standard deviation (SD) score for the effectiveness of CO2 laser ablation for HHD was 9.3±0.9 (maximum: 10). All patients reported improved QoL. No patient had recurring disease within the treatment field. Five patients underwent additional CO2 laser treatments at new sites. One patient reported postoperative infection. No other complications were identified. The mean±SD score for overall satisfaction with CO2 laser ablation was 8.9±1.1. Conclusions: Treatment with CO2 laser ablation is very effective and can lead to prolonged or permanent remission in most HHD patients. Patients are highly satisfied with the results and report a substantial improvement in QoL.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1309-1314
Number of pages6
JournalInternational journal of dermatology
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dermatology


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