A 48-year-old woman presented with red papules on the thigh. Histopathological examination indicated pyogenic granuloma, and the patient was treated with total excision in 2003 and electrocauterization in 2005. Three months later, upon recurrence of the lesions, a diagnosis of composite haemangioendothelioma (CHE) was made. The patient was treated by total excision and lymph-node dissection, which revealed inguinal lymph-node metastasis. Despite the surgery, a further local recurrence occurred, subsequently treated by wide excision en bloc, with adjuvant radiotherapy and chemotherapy. Although CHE is defined as a vascular tumour with low-grade malignancy, the local recurrences and lymph-node metastases resulted in treatment difficulties in this case. Unlike earlier cases, the tumour in our patient presented as localized numerous small papulonodules, and lymph-node metastasis was detected within a relatively short time. Dermatologists and pathologists should be aware of this rare condition and include it in the differential diagnosis of vascular lesions.