What are scars?

Scar on stomach

Can the appearance of scars be improved and how?

How does a scar appear the first place? Scars are a result from a natural biological process of wound repair in the skin. Minor lesions usually do not result in scarring; however most wounds after accidents, surgeries or minimally invasive treatments can result in some level of scarring.

A scar is formed due to a growth of fibrous tissue that replaces the skin after an injury. As the dermis skin layer is damaged, the human body starts forming new collagen to repair the damaged tissue which results in scar formation. The new scar tissue will have a different texture and appearance than the old surrounding skin tissue.

Most scars appear pale in colour and flat on the skin. However, in some cases when the body produces too much collagen, scars can become raised and discoloured. Raised scars are commonly called Hypertrophic or Keloid scars, most commonly found on younger and dark-skinned people. Another common scar can have a sunken or pitted appearance. This type of scarring usually appears due to loss of underlying structures supporting the skin from muscle or fat, and some surgical or acne scars.

Scars also can appear due to stretching or rapid growth of the skin. Skin that stretches quickly such as during pregnancy or in growth spurts or when skin may be under tension near a joint area, is a common cause of stretch marks.

Here are some common types of scars:

Types of scars

Scars can also appear due to skin affected by acne. Acne is a skin condition that occurs when hair follicles become plugged with oil and dead skin cells, creating a buildup of bacteria causing inflammation in the hair follicle. It can not only cause whiteheads, blackheads or pimples, and usually appears on the face, forehead, chest, upper back and shoulders. If acne is left untreated it can result in severe scarring…

Acne Scarring

Scars may not be able to be completely removed and their appearance may bother you, but there are many effective treatment options to help improve the appearance of scars.

Treatment options for scaring:

  • Laser resurfacing: This procedure, removes the surface layers of the skin using different types of lasers. Our advanced dual laser can achieve a more subtle result by working on the collagen in the dermis without removing the upper layers of skin. The advantage results in much less or little down time compared to traditional laser resurfacing, which requires a much longer recovery.
  • Dermal Filler injections: This treatment can be used to raise sunken scars to the level of surrounding skin. The effects of these injections are only temporary and the procedures may need to be regularly repeated.
  • Skin needling: A device with fine needles is used to puncture holes superficially into the skin creating a controlled skin injury. This causes the skin the heal itself promoting and stimulating collagen production to try and reduce the appearance of scars.
  •  Topical treatments, such as silicone based ointments or tapes may helps and accelerate the healing process and reduce the severity of scaring.
  • Surgery: Although it will not remove a scar, surgery can be used to alter a scar’s shape or make it less noticeable. Surgery is not recommended in cases of hypertrophic or keloid scarring (raised scars) because there is a risk of recurring scars as well as more severe scarring that results from the treatment.
  • Steroid injections: A course of steroid injections into a scar may help flatten it. Injections may help to soften the appearance of keloid or hypertrophic scars.