What are scar treatments?
Just like there are different kinds of scars, there are different types of scar treatments! Typically, scar treatments are treatments done to diminish or erase the appearance of scars or to make painful, tight, or itchy scars less symptomatic. Scar treatments can include surgical procedures, the use of energy-based devices, and prescription and over-the-counter medications and products. Dermatology Duluth offers:
- Scar Revision Surgery
- CO2 Laser Resurfacing of Surgical Scars
- Vascular Laser to reduce redness
- Microneedling with and without PRP (platelet-rich plasma)
- Chemical peels
- Prescription medications
- Silicone scar gel retail products
Which treatment is best for you is generally determined by the kind of scar that you have. Different types of scars that are considered when deciding which treatment is right for you include:
- Hypertrophic or keloid scars (raised pink scars)
- Atrophic scars (depressed patches of scar tissue)
- Contractures (movement-restricting scars)
Deeper scars, larger scars, or those restricting movement usually may require more aggressive laser or surgical procedures procedures, while smaller scars may be improved using less invasive treatments
Scar Revision Surgery
Scar revision surgery is a type of treatment that involves revising the scar in order to help it blend in with the rest of the skin around it. This revision is done surgically either by removing the scar, reopening the scar in order to stitch it back together in a less conspicuous way, skin grafting, or tissue expansion.
Your need for scar revision surgery depends on multiple factors including the size and severity of scarring, location on the body, and the availability of healthy surrounding skin.
Laser Resurfacing of Surgical Scars
Laser resurfacing of scars is an effective method for reducing the appearance of many scars, even the old ones! It can also help prevent severe scarring following surgery, reduce pain, itching, and discomfort that can come with a scar, and help increase range of motion with mobility-limiting scars.
CO2 lasers help to break through thick scar tissue allowing for targeted drug delivery as well as stimulating new collagen growth while VBeam vascular laser targets the blood vessels to help lighten pink or red scars. Used in combination they are a powerful therapy for scar improvement These laser treatments for scars may take more than one session and generally demonstrate improvement visible at 1 week but improving over the following 2-3 months.
Cosmetic Scar Reduction
Acne scarring is a common form of scarring that is easily treated, but there are a variety of routes that can be taken depending on the level of scarring. Reducing the appearance of acne scars can also involve using a variety of methods.
For depressed acne scars, you can often expect treatments like:
- Acne scar surgery – done by raising the scar or by separating the scar tissue
- Resurfacing – done by using laser treatment, chemical peels, dermabrasion, and/or microdermabrasion
- Fillers – used to raise the scar
- Radiofrequency – performed to tighten skin
- Collagen-induction therapy – microneedling to encourage collagen production
For raised acne scars, you can often expect treatments like:
- Injections – done to soften and flatten scars
- Acne surgery – done to reduce the appearance of scarring and can be followed by injections or radiation therapy for optimal results
- Laser treatment – utilizing heat-generating lights to reduce the appearance of, flatten, and decrease the discomfort of acne scars
- Creams, gels and silicone dressing – non-invasive form of scar treatment that reduces the appearance of scarring gradually over time
Why see a dermatologist for scar treatment?
Sometimes scars can cause pain, discomfort, or limit mobility. Getting treatment for your scars can not only give you a boost in confidence, but can also improve your quality of life!
Scars on the skin may never be completely erased,, but our treatments can dramatically improve their appearance! Depending on the severity of the scarring, your dermatologist may want to perform more than one kind of treatment in order for you to see the best results.
What to expect at your appointment
The most important part of scar treatment is determining what kind of scar you have and what level of scarring has occurred. As stated previously, different scars require different treatments. Dermatology Duluth works to find the right treatment option for each individual patient. Some procedures may be done at your initial consultation while others may be scheduled to allow you to plan for any post-treatment down-time.
Dr. Reich’s specialization in procedural dermatology offers you the highest level of care. We have a dedicated guest lounge for the comfort and privacy of our surgical patients
If you have a scar or scarring that you would like treated, call Dermatology Duluth to schedule your appointment today!