The formation of scars or scar tissue is a normal part of the healing process, and occurs when the skin is cut due to injury or surgery.
The growth of scar tissue is influenced by many factors, these include:
- The severity of the original injury
- The size, depth and location of the wound on the body
- Hereditary factors
- Colour of the skin (pigmentation)
- The technique of the initial surgical repair of the incision or wound
- A person’s overall state of health, fitness and nutrition
- The person’s age
- Smoking, which slows the rate of healing
- A complication during healing, such as infection, inflammation, bleeding, or delayed healing
Scars are permanent. However, over time they may become less pink, faded and less noticeable. Occasionally, scars may be thick, irregularly raised and pink.
Scars may become a problem when they:
- Alter a person’s appearance, making them feel less attractive or self-conscious
- Impair movement or mobility
- Cause pain
- Cause intense itching and inflammation
TYPES OF PROBLEM SCARS INCLUDE:
- Hypertrophic scars
– raised and red scars that are usually itchy and sometimes painful
- Keloid scars
– similar to hypertrophic scars but tend to grow beyond the edges of the original wound. These scars can become thick, puckered and firm. They can also be itchy or painful
– often results from burns and injuries where large areas of skin were lost. They can severely restrict movement and mobility
- Facial scars
– include acne scars as well as traumatic scars. Due to their location on the face, these scars can affect a person’s appearance and self-esteem
WHO IS A GOOD CANDIDATE & WHAT IS INVOLVED?
While no medical or surgical method can remove a scar completely, Dr Ali Hussain can often improve the comfort, function and appearance of a scar by making it less noticeable or easier to conceal.
There are many non-surgical and surgical techniques that may be used to treat problematic scars. A combination of surgical and non-surgical techniques may be used to achieve the best outcome. Discuss with Dr Ali Hussain the most appropriate treatment for you.
NON–SURGICAL TREATMENT OF SCARS:
- Application of adhesive tape after wound healing to help flatten the scar
- Topical steroid (cortisone) creams
- Injection of a steroid (cortisone) into the scar
- Silicone gel dressings or bandages
- Compression garments
- Chemical peels
- Soft tissue fillers including collagen, implants and autologous (patient’s own) fat
- Radiotherapy, usually for severe cases and as part of overall scar management
Dermabrasion is a procedure that uses an electrical machine to remove the top layers of skin. The process is comparable to sanding. Scars become less obvious as the skin surface heals.
is where the scar is cut out and repaired with one or more layers of stitches, aimed to produce a thinner less noticeable scar.
- Z-Plasty or W-Plasty:
are procedures designed to re-align the scar tissue, particularly where a scar lies across a skin crease or where contractures have resulted from injuries, such as burns.
- Skin graft and flap surgery:
Skin graft and flap surgery are more complex procedures than other forms of scar revision. This form of surgery is usually for scarring that involves large areas of skin and for contractures that restrict movement or cause severe pulling of the surrounding skin. Skin grafting involves taking a piece of normal skin from a healthy part of the body (the donor site) and placing it on the area where scar issue has been removed. Flap surgery is more complex than skin grafting as it involves the transfer of healthy skin with fat, blood vessels and sometimes muscle still attached, from the donor site to the injured area.
Surgical scar revision is a highly individualised procedure and may not be suitable for everyone. Dr Ali Hussain will assess your condition and general health, and plan the treatment that is best suited to you.
Surgical scar revision may be a good option for you if:
- You are physically healthy
- You have realistic expectations
- Your scar is causing you pain and discomfort
- Your scar is limiting your movement and mobility
- You are self conscious about the appearance of your scars
- You are a non-smoker or have stopped smoking
ANAESTHETIC AND HOSPITAL STAY:
This procedure is most commonly performed under a local anaesthetic, but can be carried out under general anaesthesia at your request. This procedure is performed in a day surgery setting. You will be able to return to the comfort of your own home soon after completion of the surgery.
RISK AND COMPLICATIONS:
Modern surgery is generally safe but does have the potential for risks and complications to occur.
Some possible complications and risks associated with scar revision surgery may include:
- Risks of anaesthesia including allergic reaction or potentially fatal cardiovascular complications such as heart attack
- Bleeding or infection that requires treatment with antibiotics
- Formation of a blood-filled swelling beneath the wound (haematoma) that requires draining
- Excessive pain that may signal the development of a wound infection, a haematoma or stiches that have become too tight due to postoperative inflammation and swelling
- Allergic reaction to suture materials, tape adhesive or other medical materials and lotions
- Keloid or hypertrophic scarring can recur following scar revision surgery
- Lack of improvement after revision surgery. The scar may not be any better than the original scar, this could lead to disappointment
- Need for further surgery to treat complications
Cost is always a consideration in elective surgery, but it should not be the only consideration. You have the right to be informed about the costs you can expect, before you have your surgery.
Costs associated with the procedure may include:
- Surgical fees
- Surgical facility costs
- Anaesthesia fees
- Post-surgery garments
After your initial consultation with Dr Ali, you will receive a written estimate of fees and an information pack to read before your second consultation. The second consultation is free of charge.
Please note: Your satisfaction involves more than a fee. When choosing a surgeon for cosmetic surgery, remember that factors such as the surgeon’s training, qualifications, experience and your comfort with him/ her are just as important as the final cost of the surgery
HOW TO BOOK A CONSULTATION
You can book a consultation to discuss your suitability for this procedure by phoning us on 0420 488 105 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Alternatively, you can fill out the contact form on our home page and we will phone you back to organise a suitable appointment time.
Disclaimer: All surgical procedures carry risks. Before proceeding, you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.