Keloid Scars in The Woodlands, Texas, with Dr. W. Marshall Guy
Keloids represent a specific type of scar. These are not the same as a hypertrophic scar or a “bad” scar. They involve the body’s normal healing mechanism going out of control creating a scar that extends well beyond the original trauma to the skin. This is different from a hypertrophic scar that merely elevates in the area where the scar was originally located.
What Causes Keloid Scars?
They may be the result of trauma, planned surgery, piercings, or something as innocuous as an insect bite. Certain groups are more predisposed to this including those of African descent. In fact, the more pigment you have in your skin, the more prone you are to keloids. However, keloids can develop in anyone other than albinos, who lack all pigment.
The treatment for keloids are different from that of normal scars. They frequently involve a combination of treatments. A common option is surgery. However, surgery alone very rarely cures keloids and often leads to a quick recurrence. Steroid injections are a main stay of therapy. These, when combined with another ingredient can help to not only control the itch, burn, and pain associated with keloids but also the size. The use of topical silicone products such as BioCorneum and Embrace have also been shown to decrease the risk of recurrence. Although radiation therapy has been used for keloid scars, Dr. Guy does not utilize this treatment as he feels the long term risks far outweigh the possible benefits.
It's Your Time to Look Your Best!
Dr. Guy is a specialist in all areas of rejuvenation and reconstruction for the face and neck. As a double board-certified and fellowship-trained facial plastic surgeon, Dr. Guy knows that everyone ages differently and that there is no one size fits all when it comes to restoring a youthful appearance. From surgical options like a facelift to non-surgical options like Botox® and dermal fillers, there’s never a better time to look your best.
Frequently Asked Questions—Keloid Repair
Occasionally, after the skin is cut, pierced, or scratched, it can leave behind a bumpy, raised scar. Keloid scars can grow larger than the original wound. Initially, it is often red in color but may darken or grow paler than the surrounding skin. It can feel rubbery to the touch and will be hairless or shiny. They can appear anywhere on the body, but they most often appear on the upper chest and earlobes due to skin tension in these areas. A few interesting facts about keloid scars include:
- They can be caused by infected scars, burns, or acne marks
- They are not contagious and rarely become cancerous
- They can grow rapidly
- Keloid scars can easily be diagnosed by a doctor with no need for tests
Keloid scars can appear on anyone, but they’re most commonly found on those with darker skin tones, and they are hereditary. It’s not known why some people are more prone to keloid scars than others. However, there are several theories. Those who are prone to keloid scarring may have a dysfunctional part of the body that affects their cell growth, collagen abnormalities, inherited bodily response to dermal injuries, or a sebum immune reaction.
If you are at risk of developing keloid scars or you are prone to this type of scar formation, it’s essential that you avoid body piercing or tattoos. You should also avoid elective cosmetic skin treatments unless they’re being performed by a medical professional who is fully aware of this dermatological issue, as they’ll be able to offer you their expertise and knowledge on how to prevent keloid scars from forming.
You should also take extra precautions with acne and treat breakouts as quickly as possible. If you do suffer from acne, or even just the occasional breakout, avoid popping, picking, or irritating the lesion in any way. Instead, rely on topical treatments, such as over-the-counter options that contain sulfuric acid, benzoyl peroxide, or tea tree oil; or prescriptions prescribed by a medical professional. These will be able to heal the bumps from within without outside interference and greatly reduce the risk of acne developing into a keloid scar.
At Guy Facial Plastic Surgery in the Woodlands, TX, we offer several facial aesthetics treatments to help reduce the appearance of keloid scars and prevent future regrowth. Some of the most popular and effective treatments include:
- Steroid injections—Over time, steroid injections administered directly into the scar through a small needle can help flatten and reduce keloid scars. A series of treatments may be necessary, but through each process, you’ll notice the keloid becoming smaller.
- Surgical excision—A surgical excision of a keloid scar involves careful dissection with a scalpel. This is typically performed on keloid scars that grow on the earlobes around a past piercing. When combined with steroid treatments, this method can greatly reduce the risk of reoccurrence.
- Cryotherapy—Liquid nitrogen is administered to the scar for a few seconds to freeze away the keloid and diminish its growth, similar to how warts or moles are removed.
All of our aesthetic Texas treatments are conducted by double board-certified facial plastic surgeon Dr. W. Marshall Guy, who utilizes his extensive education of the intricacies surrounding how the skin works. He’ll help you determine the best course of treatment to reduce the appearance of your keloid scar and prevent future regrowth.