Surgical Scar Removal

Scars result from the natural healing process that takes place after the skin’s surface has been wounded. There are various means to get rid of scars, some are invasive while others are non invasive. Some methods like use of creams may be ineffective in removal of certain scars especially deep scars. Thus, one can opt for surgical scar removal for treatment of scars that are resistant to other treatment options.

Surgery is capable of improving the appearance, correcting disfigurement and restoring functionality of a part that has been affected by a scar.

How surgical scar removal procedures work

Surgical scar removal procedures work in the following ways to improve the look of the scarred area:

- The procedure may involve complete removal of the scar while the wound left behind after removing the scar is carefully sutured leaving minimal traces of scarring and giving the area a better appearance.

- Other procedures incorporate the use of tissues (for example skin tissues) from other parts of the body in treatment of scars. This is called skin grafting.

- Some procedures work by removal of the upper layers of the scarred area to stimulate growth of new skin cells which help in diminishing the scar.

- In cases where there is loss of tissue in the scarred area due to injury, tissue expansion may be used. This involves insertion of a silicone balloon which is slowly increased in sized over a period of time, in effect stretching the skin and restoring some flexibility of the scarred area.

Examples of surgical procedures used in removal of scars:

W plasty
In this surgical procedure, the direction of the scar is altered to improve the quality of the scarred area and relieve contractures in the area. It is used to treat long linear scars that may have been caused by lacerations or poor planning of a previous surgery done on the area.

Shave excisions procedure
This procedure is also called dermal electrosurgical shave excision; it involves removing of lesions on both epidermal and dermal layers of the skin. The lesions are carefully sliced off until the level of the scarred area is at par with the surrounding skin. It is effective in treating elevated scars like hypertrophic and keloid scars.

Z plasty
This procedure is done to mainly improve the appearance and functionality of a scarred area. It involves changing straight scars into zigzag shape to help relieve contractures in a scarred area. Apart from contracted scars, it may used in treating webbed scars resulting from transverse concavities.

Subcision involves raising the scarred area to the level of the surrounding skin. Rolling and dip pitted scars can be treated using subcision. Such scars may be caused by skin conditions like acne or chicken pox. In some instances, filler material is used to facilitate treatment of the scarred area.

Punch excision
In this procedure, a special punch like instrument is used in removal of scars. This method is effective in treating ice pick scars. The scar that is left behind after the procedure is usually smaller and inconspicuous in comparison to the original scar.

Fusiform excision procedure
This procedure involves the removal of some skin tissue and subcutaneous lesions on the scarred area. It is used in treating scars that are elevated or depressed on the skin’s surface. It can also be used in removal of hypertrophic and keloid scars.

Selecting a suitable surgical procedure in treatment of scars

The one thing that one is advised not to do is choose a certain surgical procedure because it worked effectively for another person. It is recommended that one should have an appointment with a specialist to discuss the best procedure that would work well for the scars that one has.

What are the risks of undergoing surgery to remove scars?

- Quite a few number people react negatively to anesthesia and other medications administered during surgery. One example is that local anesthesia can cause breathing problems in certain people.

- Any surgery is prone to risks such as bleeding, infection, formation of keloids and formation of blood clots.

Exposure of the treated area to direct sunlight for long periods of time may lead to darkening of the area and hinder successful treatment of the area in the future.

Surgical procedures that have been successfully done in treatment of scars will have a positive impact on the patient’s life. Many surgical procedures are available, but some scars require specific surgical procedures for quality results. One also has the option of combining surgical scar removal techniques with other non surgical treatments like chemical peeling to effectively get rid of

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Categorized | How To Treat Scars

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