Scar Treatment

Written by Sarah Provost
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There have been major advances in scar treatment in recent years. While some scars can never be removed entirely, most can be significantly revised. The type of scar treatment that would be best for you depends on the type and severity of the scar.

Hypertropic and Atropic Scar Treatment

Hypertropic scars are those that are raised above the surrounding skin. Keloids are particularly large, ropy masses of tissues that spread beyond the borders of the original wound, and are most likely to appear in darker-skinned people. One of the best treatments for keloids and other hypertropic scars is compression of the healing wound with a silicon sheet. It won't do much for old scars, but it helps minimize new scars and can even prevent them from forming.

Atropic scars are depressed below the surface of the surrounding skin and are more common. Atropic scars commonly result from acne; fortunately there are several kinds of scar treatment that can help. Basically there are three ways to deal with atropic scars: skin resurfacing, fillers or punch grafts.

Skin resurfacing is done with lasers, chemical peels or microdermabrasion. It is best suited for shallow scars, and works by removing the upper layers of the epidermis to minimize the depression. Fillers are injected into the scar area to raise it to the level of the surrounding skin. Fillers can be natural, such as fat, or synthetic. Finally, for deep "ice-pick" scars, a doctor removes the scar tissue with a biopsy punch, then either sutures the resulting opening or covers it with a tiny skin graft from another part of the body.

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