When an area of skin is damaged, the body begins its natural healing process by repairing the area with fibrous tissue. This tissue is composed of proteins that develop in a different structure than healthy skin, which causes a scar to form. Aside from very minor wounds, all damage to the skin typically results in some degree of scarring. Common causes of scar tissue include damage from acne, injury, or surgery. Depending on the extent of the damage, scars can be subtle or obvious. When they develop in noticeable areas, this can cause people to feel self-conscious and want to conceal the area. In addition to having an uneven skin texture and abnormal pigment, many scars have sweat glands that do not function properly. Hair follicles also do not grow back, and the skin typically does not tan normally. For those unhappy with the bold appearance of their scars, our team at CosMedic Skincare offers scar revision to help diminish the marks for a healthier-looking, more even complexion.
What is scar revision?
Scar revision is designed to reduce the appearance of scar tissue to create a smoother skin texture and more even skin tone. Dr. Jodie Reinertson strives to make the damaged area blend with the surrounding healthy skin so the previous scar is barely noticeable. During a patient’s consultation, she examines the area of concern and determines the best treatment method for diminishing the undesirable scarring. Based on the type, degree, and size of the scarring, she will create a personalized treatment plan that may include one or more techniques for optimal improvement.
What are the different scar revision techniques?
Dr. Reinertson primarily uses the Sciton® Halo™ and subcision to treat scars. To provide the best possible results for scar revision, she may also utilize other skin care treatments. Certain techniques—such as steroid injections, other laser therapies, microdermabrasion, and chemical peels—prove to be highly beneficial for some cases. In addition, dermal fillers can further smooth areas with deep scars.
How does scar revision work?
For patients with conspicuous scarring, Dr. Reinertson typically recommends laser skin resurfacing or the minor surgical procedure known as subcision. Prior to either technique, the patient will be administered a local anesthetic to thoroughly numb the area for optimal comfort.
- Sciton® Halo™ is a laser resurfacing technique that can provide significant improvement to certain types of scars, such as from acne. The minimally invasive treatment works by creating microscopic perforations in the target area, leaving tiny areas of surrounding healthy skin untouched. This stimulates new collagen growth while speeding the healing process. The area will gradually improve over the course of six months as the body continues to heal.
- Subcision is another scar revision technique that can provide dramatic results. During this procedure, Dr. Reinertson inserts a needle below the depressed scar, releasing the fibrous connective bands that are pulling the scar downward. By removing this abnormal tension, the tissue can even out to provide a smoother skin texture.
Multiple sessions may be recommended for these options to achieve the best possible outcome. While these methods alone can provide significant reduction in scarring for many patients, others may benefit from the addition of another skin treatment, such as microdermabrasion, chemical peels, or filler injections. Depending on the treatment being performed, scars may be more noticeable in the immediate recovery but should gradually improve as the tissue heals.
What types of scars can be treated?
The best technique for diminishing a scar will ultimately depend on the type of scar with which the patient presents. Scars can typically be categorized into the following types:
- Irregular color and texture are common forms of scarring caused by damage like acne, an injury, or a surgical incision. These types of scar typically do not affect the function of the area and can often be dramatically improved with cosmetic treatment.
- Hypertrophic scars are characterized by thick, raised clusters of tissue that form as a wound heals. They tend to be darker or lighter than the surrounding skin, can be uncomfortable, and often widen over time.
- Keloid scars are usually painful, itchy scars that develop beyond the edges of the wound. They most commonly develop on areas with limited fat, such as the face, ears, neck, shoulders, or chest. Keloids may also pucker.
- Contracture scars often occur from a burn or where a wound passes over a joint. These restrict a person’s ability to properly move the area, which is caused by the skin and underlying tissue becoming abnormally tight during the healing process.
How much does scar revision cost?
Since scar revision is generally considered a cosmetic procedure, it is typically not covered by insurance. The cost of scar revision will depend upon multiple factors, including the experience of the skin care professional, the technique(s) used, and the geographic location of the doctor. When you come in for you consultation with Dr. Reinertson, you will get a better idea of what to expect during your treatment, including the amount you may need to pay. Our staff will provide a cost quote based on your personalized plan.
If you have any questions or would like to move forward with scar revision treatment, please contact CosMedic Skincare to schedule your appointment with Dr. Reinertson.