Hypertrophic scars are characterized by their raised, thickened appearance and tend to stay within the boundaries of the original wound. They may be red or pink and can cause itching or discomfort. To address hypertrophic scars, dermatologists may recommend the following treatments:
- Silicone Gel Sheets: Applying silicone sheets over the scar can help flatten and soften it over time.
- Steroid Injections: Injecting corticosteroids into the scar can help reduce inflammation, flatten the scar, and relieve symptoms.
- Laser Therapy: Laser treatments, such as pulsed-dye lasers, can help reduce redness and flatten hypertrophic scars.
Keloid scars are similar to hypertrophic scars but extend beyond the boundaries of the original wound. They appear as thick, raised, and often shiny scars that can be itchy or painful. Effective treatments for keloid scars include:
- Cryotherapy: Freezing the scar with liquid nitrogen can help flatten and reduce the size of keloids.
- Corticosteroid Injections: Injecting corticosteroids directly into the scar can help shrink keloids and reduce symptoms.
- Surgical Removal: Surgical excision may be necessary for larger keloids. Post-surgical treatments like radiation therapy or silicone sheets can help prevent their recurrence.
Atrophic scars are characterized by a sunken appearance, often resulting from conditions like acne, chickenpox, or injury. They can be shallow or deep and may appear as small pits or larger depressions. Dermatologists may recommend the following treatments for atrophic scars:
- Dermal Fillers: Injectable dermal fillers, such as hyaluronic acid, can help raise the depressed areas, making the scar less noticeable.
- Microneedling: A procedure involving tiny needles that create controlled injuries to the skin, stimulating collagen production and improving the appearance of atrophic scars.
- Laser Resurfacing: Laser treatments, such as fractional CO2 lasers, can promote collagen remodeling and reduce the depth of atrophic scars.
Surgical scars result from surgical procedures and vary in size and shape. While they typically heal well, certain treatments can further enhance their appearance:
- Topical Scar Creams and Gels: Over-the-counter or prescription scar creams containing ingredients like silicone, vitamin E, or onion extract can help soften and fade surgical scars.
- Scar Massage: Gently massaging the scar tissue in a circular motion can improve blood circulation and promote healing.
- Scar Revision Surgery: In some cases, surgical scar revision may be considered to improve the appearance of prominent or unsightly surgical scars.