A scar forms when the skin tissue gets damaged, either accidentally or as a result of surgery.
Any break in the skin triggers a complex healing process, with collagen playing the main role together with a multitude of other proteins. Over the following months, the wound will continue to produce collagen accompanied by an increase in blood supply, which can result in the wound forming a scar that is lumpy, red and raised. Generally it takes up to 18 months for a scar to settle down and achieve its final appearance.
Whilst the ideal scar is a fine pale line, poor scarring may occur either due to genetic factors (the way each individual scars up) or factors such as trauma, infection or delayed wound healing.
Poor scars can present in many forms:
- Wide (stretched) scars
- Hypertrophic scars (thick, raised scars) are a self-limited type of over-healing after tissue injury which usually regresses with type; the scar generally fades in colour and flattens to the surrounding skin level
- Keloid scars – scars that overgrow the original wound edges; they are raised, appearing as a growth on top of the skin, deeper in colour and can be uncomfortable and itchy.
- Sunken or pitted scars – caused by the loss of fat under the skin, which can distort the surrounding tissues.
The appearance of a scar can cause a person to feel self-conscious and wanting to keep it covered. Whilst there are several non-surgical ways available to treat poor scars, if all other attempts to improve the scar appearance does not prove effective enough, skin surgery for surgical scar revision may be an appropriate option.Book a Consultation