Dr. Daniel Beck, Dallas, TX plastic surgeon, offers a variety of scar revision treatments to reduce the appearance of an unsightly scar. A scar is an area of tissue that reconnects a wound made from an injury or surgery. Scar revision treatment is a procedure designed to improve the appearance or function of an area on the body that is affected by an unsightly or large scar. Although scars cannot be completely removed, a skilled plastic surgeon may be able to reduce the scar in size or improve its visibility. The greater the damage to the skin, the worse the scar will look. The most obvious scars are the ones that develop to keloid, hypertrophic or contracture scars.
Types of Scars
Scar revision surgery and the approach taken will depend on the type of scar that is being addressed. It helps to understand the various types of scars:
- Superficial scars settle only on the top skin layer. It is the least noticeable of all types of scars.
- Keloid scars form tissues that grow beyond the wound’s edge. They can be dark, painful and lumpy.
- Hypertrophic scars look like keloids, however, the tissue growth is limited within the wound area.
- Contracture scars cover a large section of skin. A good example is severe burns. The newly formed tissues tighten the skin around the wound and may cause issues with mobility.
Scar Revision Reviews
"Scar No More - Dallas, TX - The keloid scar located on my arm has always bothered me and made me felt self conscious whenever I wore a sleeveless top. The scar was about an inch long that was red and puffy. After the scar removal operation, within a week, I noticed significant difference in the appearance of the scar - less raised and red in color. Dr. Beck has been extremely kind and gone out of his way to make me feel comfortable on the day of the procedure and followed up constantly after the surgery. I went abroad a week after the operation and Dr. Beck was so kind to offer his personal email and number just in case I had an emergency. He strives for perfection and will make sure you are happy with the result!"- W. / RealSelf / Jun 13, 2016
There are various techniques to consider during a revision surgery. Scar revision treatment will be chosen based on the scar’s location, type, size and overall extent and may include one of the following approaches.
Shave excision is performed when the scar tissue is raised. A surgical shaver is used to slowly trim away the scar and flatten out the surface. Local anesthetics may be used. The ‘shaved’ area will be treated with topical medications. This technique is simple and in most cases, sutures are not needed to close any wound.
Another technique that improves a raised scar is by completely removing it or reopening then reclosing the wound. By removal, incision is made in an ellipsis pattern with a small border of good skin and closing the wound with sutures within or outside of the skin. By modification, the scar is reopened by means of incision, but this time along a different direction to minimize visibility, and then the wound is resutured back. This is the ideal approach for scars that developed due to poorly closed sutures.
Skin Grafting/Tissue Expansion
There are cases in which the removal of large scars requires repair by fillers. In such circumstance, a skin graft with skin harvested from another part of the body is a popular method to make sure that the skin blends well during the healing process. Sometimes, tissue expansion is applied instead of the skin graft. In this process, a tissue expander is placed within the reopened scar. This expander is filled with a sterile solution. Sutures will be used to join the tissue walls together and to close the wound.
In some cases, scars are depressed instead of raised. This type of scar is best treated with a derma filler that is injected into the scar site. A common material for this is known as a derma filler, and there are many variants that are available as alternatives. In many cases where scar treatment is concerned, these fillers are collagen based. Once injected, the filler will puff the scar area so that it evens out with the normal skin’s surface. This is done while the doctor reshapes the skin outside to make sure the surface flattens out.
Surface treatments such as laser treatments, chemical peels, dermabrasion and skin bleaching may be considered for mild scars. The aim of these applications is to discard the top skin gradually and consequently, flatten out the surface, and possibly change the color of the skin tone. Skin lightening techniques are also applied when the skin on the scar area is darker than the natural skin tone.
Scar treatment is usually performed using a local anesthesia. In cases where a large area is going to be treated, a general anesthesia may be needed. Post-surgery care is critical when it comes to scar treatments. Patients must adhere to the medications and proper wound care to promote better healing of the new wound resulting in a less visible scar. Although a scar will still exist on the site, patients note a significant improvement. It usually takes between 6 months and longer for optimal results.
Costs for scar revision ranges from $500 to $3,500. Larger areas with surgical procedures will cost the most while small areas, that may involve skin surface treatments, may cost the least. Since most scar removals are considered a cosmetic procedure, insurance coverage is usually not an option.
Plan Your Procedure
- Average Cost
- $500 - $3,500
- Recovery Time
- 1-3 Weeks
- Average Procedure Time
- 1-2 Hours
- Post-op Follow-up
- 1 Week
- Procedure Recovery Location