Nevus simplex, commonly known as stork bites, angel kisses, or salmon patches, is vascular birthmarks.


The exact etiology is unknown. It is thought that the condition is caused by neuromodulation defects. Nevus simplex mostly resolve spontaneously by age 2 years, so neuromodulation deficits may be a delayed maturation process rather than persistent developmental defect. Some studies have found that nevus simplex may relapse during puberty in some adults. Therefore, the occurrence of nevus simplex may be related to sex hormones.

Signs and Symptoms

Nevus simplex occur at birth or shortly after birth. Skin lesions are flat, light pink to scarlet, irregular, poorly demarcated, blanching patches, mostly on the midline area of the face, such as the upper eyelid, forehead, glabella, and occiput. The color of skin lesions may be significantly deepened when the children cry, have a fever, or are excited. Most nevus simplex resolve spontaneously within 2 years, but few may persist.

Figure 1 nevus simplex


On the basis of clinical presentations, the condition can be diagnosed.


The condition is self limited and most skin lesions resolve spontaneously within 2 years, so there is no treatment required.

If the skin lesions cannot resolve in 2 years, laser treatment is optimal. Pulsed dye laser, Nd:YAG laser, KTP laser, alexandrite laser, CO2 laser, and intense pulsed light can be applied, and photodynamic therapy is appropriate.