Scars may be the results of trauma, previous surgery, accidents or many other causes. Scar revision is the act of disguising existing scars to minimize the appearance. There are multiple means of doing so. Raised and red scars may respond to steroid injections alone while others may require multiple surgical procedures in order to minimize their appearance.
Dermabrasion is the act of removing the surface layers of the skin in order to allow for new skin to grow in from the edges from the wound. This allows for previously uninjured skin to grow along with that of the scar, creating a blended appearance that is more difficult for the eye to perceive.
Re-Excision and Reorientation
Naturally occurring creases and wrinkles in the face (e.g. horizontal wrinkles in forehead) form excellent areas to reorient scars into for camouflage. Careful excision and re-approximation of the skin edges can create a favorable healing environment for long-term minimal scar formation. Breaking up the scar from a long, straight line can help with camouflage as well, as the human eye tends to notice straight line scars longer than 3mm. This is sometimes counter-intuitive but results in significant improvement form the previous unsightly scar. Often, scar revision is a staged procedure, with excision and reorientation preceding dermabrasion which is performed 3-4 months later.
In general, laser scar revision is best performed for raised, reddened or dark scars. It is similar to dermabrasion with regards to indications and results. It is not as successful for longer scars or those on conspicuous areas of the face. In addition, it is not indicated on patients with darker complexions as it may lead to excessive lightening of the scar which may be more noticeable in the long-term.
Click here to view our photos of some of our patients “before and after” photos.