Photomed Laser Surg. 2013 Apr;31(4):183-7. doi: 10.1089/pho.2012.3414. Epub 2013 Mar 8.

A case report of conservative management of extensive proliferative verrucous leukoplakia using a carbon dioxide laser.


Department of Orofacial Sciences, School of Dentistry, University of California, San Francisco, CA, USA. nita.wu@ucsf.edu



The purpose of this report was to describe a clinical case of conservative management of extensive proliferative verrucous leukoplakia (PVL) using a carbon dioxide laser, as an alternative to complete glossectomy, which led to a sustained successful outcome over a 12-year follow-up period.


Patients with oral PVL, a high risk premalignant condition, are often treated by wide surgical excision. This approach can lead to significant morbidity and compromised quality of life.


A 50-year-old male with PVL and superficially invasive carcinoma, who had previously refused a complete glossectomy, presented for treatment. A baseline MRI and careful clinical evaluation by symptom review, inspection, palpation, toluidine blue staining, and biopsy were performed at baseline and at each follow-up to rule out invasive carcinoma. The PVL was treated on an outpatient basis by serial carbon dioxide laser excisions and/or vaporizations. This approach resulted in good clinical response and decreased morbidity over a 12-year follow-up period, as compared with the option of wide surgical excision.


This case illustrates the benefit of a more conservative treatment approach than wide surgical excision for PVL with superficially invasive carcinoma. This approach requires greater skills, training, and experience in the evaluation of oral premalignant or malignant changes. However, decreased long-term morbidity and improved quality of life make it a valuable treatment option for PVL.





[PubMed – in process]

Early diagnosis and treatment of oral conditions is critical to maintain your oral and general health.