Scars are visible signs that remain after a wound has healed. They are unavoidable results of injury or surgery, and their development can be unpredictable. Scar revision is a cosmetic procedure to improve the condition or appearance of a scar anywhere on your body. Scar revision surgery is meant to minimize the scar so that it is more consistent with your surrounding skin tone and texture. The process of scar revision involves the removal of the offending scar and its replacement with an improved surrounding skin or soft tissue. This may allow the scar to be minimized and camouflaged in a much functional and aesthetic way. The visibility of the scar following the surgery depends upon the size of the scar, the depth of the original wound, the thickness of the patient’s skin, the direction of the scar and the color of the patient’s skin.
Although scar revision can provide a more pleasing cosmetic result or improve a scar that has healed poorly, a scar cannot be completely erased.
Scar revision is plastic surgery performed to improve the condition or appearance of a scar anywhere on your body.
The different types of scars include:
Discoloration, surface irregularities and other more subtle scars can be cosmetically improved by surgery or other treatments recommended by your plastic surgeon. These types of scars do not impair function or cause physical discomfort and include acne scars as well as scars resulting from minor injury and prior surgical incisions.
Hypertropic scars are thick clusters of scar tissue that develop directly at a wound site. They are often raised, red and/or uncomfortable, and they may become wider over time. They can be hyperpigmented (darker in color) or hypopigmented (lighter in color).
Keloids are larger than hypertropic scars. They can be painful or itchy, and may also pucker. They extend beyond the edges of an original wound or incision. Keloids can occur anywhere on your body, but they develop more commonly where there is little underlying fatty tissue, such as on the face, neck, ears, chest or shoulders.
Contractures are scars that restrict movement due to skin and underlying tissue that pull together during healing. They can occur when there is a large amount of tissue loss, such as after a burn. Contractures also can form where a wound crosses a joint, restricting movement of the fingers, elbows, knees or neck.
The type of scar you have will determine the appropriate techniques your plastic surgeon will use to improve your scar.