Are you noticing that your scar seems to be healing a bit differently? Perhaps it looks raised and lumpy and has started to itch. If this sounds like you, you may have a keloid scar. These scars are usually not harmful to your health but can be uncomfortable and cause cosmetic concerns. At Pinnacle Dermatology & Skin Rejuvenation, we offer a number of keloid scar treatment options to help you achieve a less noticeable scar.
What are Keloid Scars?
When we injure ourselves and break the skin, the skin will begin to naturally heal itself. During this process, it uses collagen to heal the area, which can result in a scar. Depending on the amount of collagen your body creates during the healing process and the cause of your injury, your body can create different types of scars. These may include keloid scars, which form when extra scar tissue grows.
Keloids can appear much larger than the original injury and can affect any area of the body. While they are not harmful to your health, they can cause individuals distress over their cosmetic appearance.
Common symptoms of keloids include:
- Flesh-colored, pink, or red in color.
- A lumpy area of raised skin.
- An area of skin that continues to grow over time.
Who Is at Risk for Keloid Scars?
Both men and women can develop keloids, though people with darker skin tend to be more prone to them. Additionally, those who are of Asian or Latino descent, are pregnant, are younger than 30 years of age, or have parents who have keloids may be at a higher risk for developing keloid scarring.
Keloid Scar Treatment Options
The keloid treatment process can be tricky, as the goal is to prevent another keloid from forming due to treatment. There are a number of different options when it comes to reducing the symptoms and improving the appearance of keloid scars, including:
Cortisone Injections: Can be used to reduce inflammation and lower the risk of your keloid returning.
Cryosurgery: This treatment option employs liquid nitrogen to freeze away the keloid.
Pressure Pads: Using pressure or silicone gel pads after you sustain an injury can help to prevent keloids from forming.
Laser Treatment: Laser treatment works by resurfacing the keloid scar and the surrounding skin to create a smoother appearance. Most people require multiple treatments for best results.
Surgery: This technique can be used for very large keloids or older keloids. However, there is a risk for the keloid scar to return, so it is often combined with other treatment techniques.