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Scar Revision

There are many sources of scars, from accidents to surgeries. How a scar develops is often unpredictable, since the factors include how a particular person’s body heals, as well as the injury or wound that caused it. Scars form where multiple layers of skin have been damaged.

A scar cannot be removed completely, but scar revision surgery is one method by which a plastic surgeon can improve a scar’s appearance and make it smoother and less visible.

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Who is a candidate for scar revision surgery?

Anyone who is bothered by a scar anywhere on their body should discuss their options with Dr. Beck. In general, the best candidates are those who:

  • Are generally healthy and do not smoke.
  • Have realistic goals for the outcome of the surgery.
  • Do not have any skin diseases or active acne in the area to be surgically treated.
Scar Revision Charlotte, NC

What is the procedure for scar revision surgery?

There are different types of scars, and each may be treated differently. Most procedures are done on an outpatient basis, with local anesthesia.

Keloid Scars

Keloids are formed when collagen continues to be produced, after a wound has healed. They appear thick and puckered, and grow beyond the edges of the wound or incision. They may be accompanied by redness, itching and burning.

Steroid medications are often used to reduce these symptoms and may help to shrink the scar. If not, the scar tissue can be removed; then the are carefully closed with tiny stitches.

Hypertrophic Scars

Hypertrophic scars look similar to keloids but remain within the wound site. They, too, may improve with steroids. The alternative surgical procedure involves removing the excess tissue and repositioning the incision to be less visible.

Contractures

A contracture, often seen in burn patients who have lost a large area of skin, is a scar that pulls the edges of the skin together. It can restrict movement, if the adjacent muscles and tendons have been affected. A contracture is typically corrected by removing the scar tissue and replacing it with a skin graft or flap. A Z-plasty, which involves repositioning the scar along natural folds and contours, may also be considered.

Recuperation

The recovery process and the time it takes depend largely on the type of scar revision surgery employed. Commonly, however:

  • You should be able to return home within an hour or two of the surgery.
  • Downtime (i.e., staying home from work and refraining from strenuous physical activity) could last from two to seven days.
  • Swelling, redness and bruising are often gone within the first few days.
  • Removal of stitches should occur within four to seven days
  • Avoid activities that involve friction against the treated area for a few weeks.

All normal activity may be resumed within a few months, but full results may not be visible for a year.

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Other Options

Dermabrasion, chemical peel and laser resurfacing are additional options for addressing facial scars. Dr. Beck will ensure you have the treatment plan that will provide the best outcome for you.

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