Make scars disappear: What are the options?

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Acne on the face, burns on the body, cuts during surgical procedures: Scars can always remain. Those who perceive the marks on the skin as blemishes often want to get rid of them very quickly. But it is not that simple.

Whether by laser, microneedling or surgery: the appearance of scars can be improved. But treatment is often time-consuming – and can be expensive. What are the possible options?

Injuries or operations often leave scars. For some people, such scars are a blemish of beauty, and in some cases they are downright disfiguring. What options does modern medicine offer to make scars disappear?

Scar treatment must be partly paid for by the patient
How scars can be treated

“You can improve the appearance of scars with various procedures, but they generally do not become invisible”, explains Professor Philipp Babilas, dermatologist at Hautzentrum Regensburg. In addition, the treatment can cost money: Who decides for it, should clarify in advance, who carries the costs, guesses/advises Jochen Sunken of the consumer center Hamburg.

Before this decision the consultation stands by specialized Dermatologen or specialists for plastic and aesthetic surgery. Because which of the procedures is used, depends among other things on the skin type of the patient and the kind of the scars.

Scars have many causes

Scars are a kind of replacement tissue that the body forms to close wounds. There are thickened (hypertrophic), sunken (atrophic) and proliferating scars (keloids). They can be treated in different ways – an overview:

With this method, dermatologists can treat a scar very specifically through calculated injuries without destroying adjacent tissue. It is suitable for improving acne or surgical scars, for example. The disadvantage: “Laser therapy is time-consuming,” says Babilas. Several sessions are often necessary.

In this case, a device is loaded with very fine needles that prick the scar up to 1000 times per minute. The aim is to get the skin to form collagen and elastin. Microneedling is often used for smooth or sunken scars.

A specialist injects cortisone into the scar tissue with a thin injection needle. This inhibits inflammation and stops cell growth. This is particularly useful for thickened scars and keloids, says Babilas.

In the case of a large scar, it is sometimes advisable to cut out the scar and sew it up again. An alternative could also be to transplant skin. Here, the surgeon removes fatty tissue from an inconspicuous area of the body and sutures it over the scar tissue. According to Babilas, the disadvantage of these variants is that new scars are created.

WashingtonNewsday Health and Wellness.

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