What causes scars?
We use the term scar for the traces left after injuries caused by various reasons, surgical operations and cuts. The first reaction of the body in the event of an trauma is bleeding. Then clotting occurs here. The top layer of the clot dries to become a scab. Thus, the wound is protected from external factors.
The lower layer of the clot contains cells called fibroblasts; these cells are the building blocks of tissue that causes the scar which occurs when the scab is exfoliated. Although the tissue that creates the scar has the same cells as the normal skin, a different appearance occurs due to the structure of the collagen.
Causes of scars:
- Physical traumas
- Cut marks after surgical operations
- Dog bites, cat scratch marks etc.
- Burn scars
- Scars caused by rashes such as chicken pox or acne
What are the symptoms and signs of scars?
The scar is a hard fibrous tissue that develops in red and purple colour on the skin during the healing process and gradually becomes flatter and paler.
How is a scar diagnosed?
Scars are usually diagnosed by visual inspection. In some cases, more detailed examinations may be required to understand the actual status of the scar, such as examining under the microscope or carrying out biopsy.
Is it possible to treat scars with creams, lotions or applying vitamin E?
Some specific products produced to remove scars can help heal up to a certain point. However, they cannot completely remove the scar.
Does a scar fade over time?
It may take at least 2 years for a scar to stabilize after it occurs. This process varies from person to person and in terms of the anatomical location of the scar. The body produces large amounts of collagen to heal a scar. Also, since it forms new blood vessels, the scar will initially have dark and reddish appearance. Over time, the amount of blood delivered to the scar decreases, and then the scar starts to flatten. Before deciding on any treatment, it is necessary to wait for a while, avoid contact with the scar and see the final form it will take. The doctor decides on the most accurate treatment time after examining the scar in detail.
Why do scars itch?
During the healing of scars and formation of new tissues, the body releases a substance called histamine. Histamine is of great importance in the healing process of scars. Histamine also causes an allergic reaction, and itching occurs in the scar when it is secreted. Itching may intensify as the scar healing progresses. During this process, collagen production of the skin increases and the scar starts to be wrapped with new skin cells. The new skin is very sensitive and can be damaged by any intervention. It is necessary to keep the area of the scar clean and avoid irritation by scratching. However, if itching is accompanied by redness, pain, or discharge, this may mean that the scar is inflamed. In such a case, you should definitely consult your doctor.
What are the types of scars?
Contracture scars: These scars occur when the skin is burned. They cause contracting of the skin and can reduce the ability to move.
Keloids: Keloid means excessive scar healing. Even after a long time, the scar may be swollen, overgrown beyond boundaries, itchy and red.
Hypertrophic scars: These are red spots similar to keloids that do not go beyond the boundaries of the scars. In treatments, steroid injections or silicone layers that flatten the scar are used to reduce inflammation.
Acne scars: There are many types of acne scars ranging from deep pits to angled or wavy appearances. Treatment options depend on the type of acne scar you have.
Which parts of the body are most prone to keloid scar formation?
Keloid scars more frequently occur on the arms, head, neck and chest.
What are the effects of sunlight on the scars?
As the newly formed skin on the scar is thin and defenseless, UV lights from the sun will endanger healing. For this reason, it is necessary to use a sun protection cream.
How is a scar treated?
Laser treatment is prioritized in treatment planning. Thulium or fractional lasers are preferred. Burns and scars can be treated by adipose tissue injection. In this treatment, as well as the formation of adipose tissue with stem cells, the area is also softened with laser.
PRP, dermapen or radiofrequency can also be used as supportive applications. With all these treatments, the target is to eliminate the abnormal tissue formed as a result of excessive cell production due to the formation of burns and wounds. The treatment is planned in terms of sessions. Though the expected outcome vary from person to person, the recovery rate is around 60-70%.