Surgical Scar Reduction

Scars result from an accident,injury, burn or surgery and can cause marks that make you feel self-conscious about your appearance. Scars can have profound implications like lowering the self-confidence and self-esteem. The way a scar develops depends largely on the surgeon’s skill or the original injury. While many scars appear unattractive and large initially, they become less noticeable over the period of time. Some scars can be treated with steroids for relieving symptoms like itching and tenderness.

Scar removal surgery

Scars might or might not be removed permanently, however with some cosmetic surgical procedures, their appearance can be improved, made less obvious through the application of medications or injections. Surgical scar reduction or scar revision procedure can help in making these scars appear almost unnoticeable.

As stated above, scars that appear unattractive and large at first might become less visibleover time. It is possible to treat some scars with steroids to alleviate symptoms like itching and tenderness. It is primarily because of this reason that most plastic surgeons suggest to wait as long as a year or may be more after a surgery or injury before you take the decision for scar reduction surgery.

How much does the presence of scar bother someone varies from person to person?Different types of scars need different solutions – non-surgical or surgical.

What is scar reduction surgery or procedure?

Different types of scars need different treatments. The treatment method does not always have to be surgical. It depends entirely on the cause and nature of the scar.

The best way to enhance the possibilities of the perfect recovery is by choosing a board-certified and experienced plastic surgeon and abide to the given instructions, both before and after the procedure. listed below are a few main types of scars along with the possible treatments.

Keloid Scars

Keloids are itchy, thick, the puckered cluster of scar tissue that grows beyond the edges of the incision or wound. They are in either red or darker color than the surrounding skin. Such scars occur when the body produces the tough and fibrous protein called collaged after a wound or injury has healed.

Keloids can occur anywhere on the body, however they appear more commonly over the shoulders, the breastbone, and on the earlobes. These scars are more common in dark-skinned people than those who have fair skin. The tendency to develop Keloids lessens with the age.

Steroid treatment

Keloids are treated by administering the injection with a steroid directly into the scar tissue for reducing burning, itching and redness. Sometimes, the treatment also shrinks the scar. In case the results of this treatment are not adequate, the scar tissue can be cut and the incision or wound be closed with one or more layers of stitches. The procedure is performed under local anesthesiaas an outpatient procedure.

Aftercare and recovery

You can return to work within two to three days after the procedure. stitches will be removed within a few days. In some cases, the skin graft is also used, although the part from which the graft has been taken might then develop a keloid.

Results

Irrespective of the approach taken to treat the scar, keloids have the tendency to appear again, sometimes even much larger than before. To discourage the same, plastic surgeon might perform scar removal treatment with steroid injection, a radiation therapy, or direct application of steroids during surgery. Sometimes, you have to wear a pressure garment for more than a year. Even so, there is every possibility that Keloid might return, triggering the need for repeated procedures every few years.

Hypertrophic Scars

It is often that these scars are confused with Keloids, since both tend to raised, red and thick.

Treatment

These scars remain within the boundaries of the original wound or injury. Hypertrophic scars often improve on their own with the help of injections or steroid application. In case, a conservative approach does not help in improving its appearance, it is possible to treat these scars surgically. The plastic surgeon removes excess scar tissue and might reposition the incision so that it heals inconspicuously.

Anaesthesia and Recovery

This surgical procedure is performed under either general or local anesthesia based on the location of the scar and what you and plastic surgeon decide. You might be given steroid injections during the procedure and at regular intervals for two years preventing the thick scar from reforming.

Contractures

Burn and other injuries that result in the loss of a large part of the skin might form scar that pulls the edges of the skin together refers to a process called the contraction. The subsequentcontracture might affect the adjacent tendons and muscles thus restricting normal movement.

Tissue Expansion/ Z Plasty/ Grafting

Rectifying a contracture involves cutting out the scar and replacing it with a flap or graft. In some cases, this procedure is also known as Z-Plasty. And new methods, like tissue expansion, play an increasingly important role. If the contracture has been present for some time, you might require physical therapy after surgery for restoring full function.

Facial Scars

It is because of this location, a facial scar is oftenconsidered a cosmetic problem, whether or not it is hypertrophic.

Treatment

There are different ways that can make a facial scar less obvious. In most cases, it is cut out and closed with stitches leaving behind a thinner and less noticeable scar. In case the scar lies across the natural skin creases, also known as lines of relaxation, the plastic surgeon might able to reposition it so that it can run parallel to these lines, where it will be less visible, Z-Plasty.

There are some facial scars that are softened by using a method called dermabrasion, a controlled scrapping of the top layers of the skin making use of a high-speed rotary and hand-held wheel. This technique leaves a smoother surface to the skin, however, it will not completely erase the scar.

Z-Plasty

It is a surgical method used for repositioning a scar so that it closely reforms to the natural creases and lines of the skin, where it will be less visible. In addition, it will also help in reliving the tension consequential to contracture. Not all scars can get treated with Z-plasty, however, it is an experienced surgeon who can suggest the best.

In this surgical procedure, the surgeon removes the old scar and makes new incisions on each side, making small triangular flaps of skin. Then, these flaps are rearranged for covering the wound at a different angle, giving this scar a “Z” pattern. The incision is closed with stitches which is removed after a few days. The surgery is performed under local anesthesiaas an outpatient procedure.

While Z-plasty can make some scars appear less visible, it will not disappear them. A part of the scar would still remain outside the lines of relaxation.

Flap Surgery and Skin Grafting

Flap surgery is relatively a complex procedure in which skin, along with underlying fat layer, blood vessels, and sometimes the muscle, is moved from a healthy portion of the body to the injured or wounded area. In some flaps, the blood supply remains attached at one end to donor region whereas, in others, the blood vessels in the flap are attached again to the vessel at the new site making use of microvascular surgery.

Grafting is a procedure that involves the transfer of skin from a healthy body part to cover the injured one. The ‘graft’ is said to “take” when new scar tissue and blood vessels form in the injured part. While most grafts from the own skin of a person are successful, in some cases, the graft does not take. Also, all grafts leave behind some scarring at the recipient and donor sites.

Flap surgery and skin grafting can improve the function of the scarred area. The aesthetic results may be less satisfactory because the transferred skin might not match the texture and color of the surrounding skin. Generally, flap surgery produces much better cosmetic results in comparison to skin grafts.

You can up your prospects of getting rid of scars and lessen risks involved in the surgery by choosing an experienced and trained plastic surgeon and closely adhering to his or her advice, both before and after surgery.

While no form of the scar can be removed completely, a qualified and experienced plastic surgeon can improve its appearance making it less noticeable through the application of some steroids or injection or cosmetic surgery procedure like Surgical Scar Reduction.

Anaesthesia

Z -Plasty is performed under local anesthesia as an outpatient procedure. Flaps and skin grafts are more serious when compared to other types of scar surgery. They are performed in the hospital as inpatient surgeries under general anesthesia.

Aftercare and Recovery

In this procedure, the wound is closed with stitches that are removed a few days after the surgery. After Flap surgery and skin grafting, it might take several weeks or months to heal the treated site, and you might be asked to wear a bandage or a support garment for more than a year.

After Scar Revision or Reduction

With any form of scar reduction surgery procedure, it is very important for you to follow the instructions given by the cosmetic surgeon to make sure the treated site heals properly. Although you might feel better, your plastic surgeon will recommend you to gradually resume normal activities.

As you start healing, keep in mind that scar cannot be removed completely, there will be a great improvement on the direction and scar of your scar, the quality and nature of your skin. Also, it is essential to take care of the wound.

Cost of Scar Reduction Surgery

When it comes to the cost of scar reduction surgery, it depends on several factors. The best way to know about the cost involving the procedure, make sure you discuss all your concerns and queries with the plastic surgeon.

We at, Tour2CosmeticSurgeryIndia, are associated with some of the renowned plastic surgeons having precision and finesse in cosmetic surgeries and other procedures. Surgical scar reduction is one such procedure. We adhere to the highest standards of confidentiality and privacy of the information of our patients. Your comfort and care is our topmost priority.

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