How Does Scar Removal Work?

Scars can be an unwanted reminder of difficult times. The scar across your chin tells the story of the time you fell off your brand-new bicycle. The scar on your shoulder transports you back to the time you were injured during a championship tennis match. 

As a plastic surgeon, Dr. Machida is specially trained in helping scars to fade away and hide in the background, but scars from injury aren’t always created or closed with the same levels of precision. Some patients are prone to developing raised, highly visible scars including hypertrophic or keloid scars. If you have unwanted scarring, treatments are available. Visit our office for a consultation to explore your options for scar removal in the Inland Empire.

Helping Your Scars to Fade Away

Scar isn’t removal isn’t a magic solution to unwanted scars. We don’t wave a wand, say a magic word, and make the scar disappear. Dr. Machida must first carefully examine the scar to select treatments that will be most effective. Sometimes, we’ll need to try a few options to find the best solution. The good news is, there are many treatment options available and most don’t require surgery. 

Common treatments for scar removal include:

  • Massage- Scars occur when collagen is overgrown or misoriented. Massage can help set things right again. Scar massage is more complex than giving your scars a gentle rub. Special techniques, instruments, and creams may be used to help breakdown and remodel the collagen within the scar. If massage is an appropriate technique for your scar, Dr. Machida will teach you the methods to use. Don’t start scar massage on a new scar without talking to your doctor first. If a scar isn’t sufficiently healed, massage can slow the healing process, leading to complications and potentially increased scarring.  
  • Compression- Compression is used to help smooth and soften scars. Compression therapy can improve the cosmetic outcome of some scars. Special compression garments may be available for some areas of the body or bandaging and wrapping may be used. 
  • Silicone Gel or Sheets- Silicone is especially helpful in reducing itching and discomfort associated with scars. Sheets and gel formulations are available. 
  • Corticosteroid Injections- A series of injections with a corticosteroid can dramatically improve the appearance of scars. Most patients will need several injections, spaced a few weeks apart.  
  • Microneedling- An effective option for acne scars, microneedling uses a special device to systematically needle-prick the skin many times. This controlled damage initiates a healing response in the skin. In addition to smoothing acne scars, microneedling can also improve the skin’s quality and appearance by fading hyperpigmentation, reducing wrinkling, and thickening the skin. 
  • Laser- Dr. Machida often uses cosmetic lasers for scar treatment. Lasers work well on many types of scars, including acne scars, surgical scars, and raised scars. 
  • Surgical Scar Removal- If less invasive options do not produce the desired results, we may recommend a surgical treatment to remove and reform the scar. Patients that are prone to developing keloid scars will require special attention during this process as raised scars can reoccur, even after surgical excision.

If you have unwanted scarring, come into STC Plastic Surgery to explore your options for scar removal and treatment today.