Scar formation is inevitable when damage from an injury enters the deeper layers of the skin. The causes of scars are many and varied including external trauma such as abrasions, cuts, or burns and internal trauma from disease entities such as acne, chicken pox, and shingles.
Scar revision (sometimes called scar removal) requires an observant eye and a creative multi-dimensional approach to be successful. Component analysis of the scars is the first step. A scar may be linear, raised, thick, depressed, uneven, vascular, hyperpigmented (brown discoloration), or hypopigmented (devoid of color). By treating each of the components of the scar, the overall improvement is usually greatest. Cortisone injections, medicated creams, W-plasty, resurfacing lasers, vascular removal lasers, pigment removal lasers, percutaneous collagen induction, and micropigment implantation are techniques that are used in isolation or in combination to improve the appearance of a scar. Multiple treatment sessions are usually required to achieve the best results.
In most cases the ideal time to begin scar revision is 6 to 12 weeks after the wound has occurred. This allows the laser surgeon to direct the body’s natural healing process to an improved cosmetic result. In certain cases, re-excision of old scars is performed prior to laser treatments in order to re-establish the 6 to 12 week window of opportunity for laser scar revision.
**Actual patients. Individual results may vary.
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