What Causes Scars?
Scars develop when there has been some sort of trauma to the dermis of the skin. This can be from any number of reasons such as acne scars, burns, abrasion, stretch mark scarring from pregnancy, or even surgical incisions. Scars develop as a part of the healing process when there has been an injury. Scars are made up of cells called fibroblasts, and produce collagen/connective tissue. There are small blood vessels (capillaries) and blood flow within a scar however, there are no glands to produce oil or elasticity. Thus, it can sometimes cause the scar tissue to become discolored, dry, or even itch. It is important to let a wound heal naturally and leave the scab in-tact so not to form a larger scar and prevent that discoloration or itching.
There are different types of scars such as acne scars from deeper comedonal formations on the skin. There are keloid scars which are an over aggressive healed scar and become very large or grow in nature. There are burn scars which can contract the skin and cause pain. There are many more but these are the most common.
There are many treatments for scarring depending on the size and depth of the scar which will determine whether or not the treatment can be outpatient or not.
Many patients prefer outpatient as opposed to surgical or plastic surgery (which may be the only option depending on the size and type). The most common treatment options in dermatology are PDT laser to treat acne scars, using pulses of light to reduce the scarring. Fraxel Dual resurfacing laser is common to ablate the scarred area and resurface to newer skin deeper beneath the dermis. Microneedling is common for many types of scars which will renew the dermis and create damage to the current scar and promote smoother healing and collagen growth. Sometimes dermal filler such as Restylane can be used to fill in deeper “hole” scarring. Of course there are some topical treatments used for newer less erosive scarring.
Before & After
If you would like to learn more about treatments for scars, please call one of our specialists at a location near you.
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