Scars are the inevitable result of skin injury. Whether this occurs as the result of a laceration (cut) or surgery, the skin will show evidence of scar tissue. Common changes in scar healing can continue for up to one year or longer. During its early formation, a scar may be pink, firm and bumpy (2 to 3 months). These changes may then gradually give way to fading, softening and flattening over the next 9 months.
While many patients have scars that respond in this way, some scars may not do quite as well. Many factors are involved in the development of a scar and can contribute to the end result of a "good" or "bad" scar. Ideally, a "good" scar would remain thinner, hairline, flat and blend well with natural skin color. A "bad" scar can form with both contour and color irregularities. Some contours can be depressed (creased like a wrinkle), thick and raised (like a speed bump) or widened (like a stretch mark). Some color problems can leave a scar pink (also red or purple), darker brown than the surrounding skin (hyperpigmentation), or more pale white than the surrounding skin (hypopigmentation).
Some factors contributing to skin healing can make the scar more of a problem, (e.g. deep wounds, skin being removed for moles or cancer, an individual's natural tendency to form thicker scars, or location of the scar in a more visible area). The plastic surgical care of wounds attempts to maximize favorable wound healing to achieve as minimal a scar as possible
Scars are the unavoidable result of skin injury or surgery. The healing and appearance of a scar can sometimes be unpredictable. If you have a bothersome scar, in a visible location, then scar revision may be right for you. While a scar cannot be completely erased, plastic surgery can often improve the appearance of a scar to minimize its visibility.
Revision techniques include a range of treatment options that progress from less invasive (topical creams and injections) to more comprehensive surface treatment (dermabrasion sanding of the skin or chemical peel) and complete excision removal of the scar with surgical repair revision.
Deciding what is right for you starts with a consultation, evaluation of the scar and a discussion of the best options for improvement.