Learning to ride a bike is a memorable moment for most of us and so is a C-section (the joy of seeing your little angel). A car accident is however not something anyone wants to remember. All the examples could nevertheless have marked the onset of a scar tissue. This article will explain the various options that you can use to remove that ugly, pesky scar tissue.
Can Scar Tissue Be Removed?
As we have already said elsewhere, scars form as part of the skin’s natural healing process. The scar tissue is normally replaced with normal tissue gradually as the wound heals which explain why most scars fade away (although not completely) as time goes by.
This may however take as much as 2 years and if the location of the scar makes it hard to hide it even when it has go the knack for attracting all the unwarranted attention, then you might start wondering if a scar tissue can be removed.
The right answer to the question, “can scar tissue be removed?” is yes. But it also deserves a mention here that no scar tissue treatment option can completely eliminate a scar tissue, so instead of the question, “can scar tissue be removed?” it is perhaps more appropriate to ask, “can scar tissue be reduced?” which then make the remaining part of this article very relevant.
How to Remove Scar Tissue– Scar Tissue Removal
There are lots of questions being asked about the issue of scar removal, but before we go into them, let us first of explain how to remove scar tissue on a general scale.
Dermabrasion and microdermabrasion: in dermabrasion, an abrading tool is used to strip out the upper layer of the skin. The American Society of Plastic Surgeons likes dermabrasion as “mechanical polishing of the skin”. This is used to treat raised scars. Microdermabrasion is a less invasive variation of dermabrasion but on the downside, it only helps to reduce superficial scars.
Laser skin resurfacing: laser skin resurfacing is the option that immediately pops us in my mind whenever someone asks me to explain how to remove scar tissue because I was dazzled by the science behind this treatment option.
In a nutshell, laser light is used to remove the upper layer of the skin which then kick-starts a regrowth of healthy skin, but there are newer laser lights that target the dermis directly without damaging the upper layer (epidermis).
Steroid and filler injections: steroid injections can as well help to reduce keloid and hypertrophic scars. Atrophic scars also improve when injected with filler or collagen injections, but the results usually last a few months.
Radiotherapy: low-dose radiotherapy also helps to reduce and/or stop the recurrence of keloid and hypertrophic scars but it is usually reserved in the last line of action since it is potentially linked to long-term side-effects.
Cryotherapy: cryotherapy is typically used to treat raised scars. In this procedure, the scar is frozen using special reagents.
Surgery: surgery can also be used to reduce the appearance of scar. We have discussed scar revision surgery in more details in a subsequent section of this article.
Abdominal Scar Tissue Removal – Abdominal Scar Tissue Removal Surgery
Abdominal scar tissue removal is more often than not necessary for medical rather than aesthetic reasons.
This typically happens when painful adhesions are formed in the stomach following abdominal surgery, injury, radiotherapy, organ inflammation conditions such as appendicitis, peritonitis, and cholecystitis, not to forget inflammatory conditions such as pelvic inflammatory diseases.
While the treatment options described in the above section (e.g. laser skin resurfacing and dermabrasion) may be used to reduce abdominal scar tissues for aesthetic purposes, they are usually not advisable for adhesion-related abdominal scars.
Instead these are treated using therapies such as Active Release Technique (ART) and Graston Technique (which are administered by chiropractors to release pinched nerves), acupuncture, medication and cortisone injections, exercise, and as Laparoscopic surgery as the last resort.
Ankle Scar Tissue Removal
“I have a scar tissue on my ankle which despite being naturally painless is causing me discomfort when I wear certain shoes. What can I do about it?”
That is a question sent to use by one of our readers in Canada. There are numerous scar tissue removal creams such as Revitol and Selevax (see the scar removal creams section below) which can improve the scar but if they don’t seem to help, you may want to consider silicone sheets, steroid injections, laser resurfacing, dermabrasion and surgery among the other options.
Schedule an appointment with your doctor for advice on the most appropriate options for your specific case.
Knee Scar Tissue Removal
Otherwise known as stiff knee syndrome, Arthrofibrosis is one of the risks associated with knee surgery. It can also occur as a result of injury to the knee or any other joint. After some time, scar tissue may accumulate inside the knee as to make the knee joint tighten and shrink and this can affect your ability to move the knee.
Knee scar tissue removal typically involves a minimally invasive surgical arthroscopic surgery procedure known as arthroscopy arthrolysis, but in severe cases open surgery may be needed which is in most cases followed by a physical therapy.
Muscle Scar Tissue Removal
Body building is a dream of many but it has its own risks and torn muscles and scar tissues is one of them. When a muscle gets torn and gets repaired with scar tissue a significant reduction of strength and power is inevitable.
Some of the muscle scar removal options range from cryotherapy (cold presses), cortisone injections, and therapies such as ART, not to forget scar removal surgery.
Eye Scar Tissue Removal
Scar tissue can grow in your eye after an infection and/or surgery e.g. cataract surgery, and interfere with normal vision. This can for example when scar tissue and blood mix with the normally clear vitreous gel making the incoming light no longer able to reach the retina as it should be and effectively reducing the vision considerably.
Luckily surgery can help to remove any scar tissues accumulated in the retina for whatever reason. Vitrectomy (surgical removal of vitreous humor) may be required during the surgery to give the ophthalmologist better access and view of the back of the eye. Laser treatment can also be used to remove the scar tissue.
Scar Tissue Removal Surgery – Surgery to Remove Scar Tissue
Scar tissue is usually not a cause of concern. But if its location, size and shape make you feel uncomfortable or make it hard to conceal with clothes, you may then you may be a candidate for scar tissue removal surgery.
Surgery is typically performed to reduce the size and alter the shape of the scar in such a way that it becomes less noticeable or to restore skin function e.g. increase the radius of motion. Surgery is also used to remove painful scar tissue.
There are many approaches to scar tissue removal surgery, otherwise known as scar revision surgery and these vary depending on the type of the scar as well as its location. Surgeons will advice you on the most suitable option for your specific case.
On the general scale however, scar removal surgery is not recommended for removal of keloid and hypertrophic scars since they have been shown to worsen off and keep recurring when that treatment route is opted. Surgery is however occasionally used for these types of scars alongside other treatment options such as radiotherapy.
An equally important thing to keep in mind is that most insurance cover companies do not cover the cost of scar revision – either in full or half – if it is being done purely for aesthetic reasons rather than for medical reasons.
They will also not foot the bill for any follow up treatment or treatment for any complications arising from scar tissue removal surgery. It is up to you to talk to your health insurance company.
Scar Tissue Removal Cream
I spend some time reading reviews of creams available on the market for removal of scar tissue and Revitol Scar Cream seems like s force to reckon with if online reviews by experts and customer reviews and ratings are anything to go by.
Its only downside is that its features hydroquinone as one of the ingredients and that doesn’t auger well with some sections of the population. Other creams that you may want to consider are Mederma, Skinception Dermefface FX7, Kelo-Cote Advanced Formula Scar Gel, TriDerma Scar Reliever and Selevax Intensive Scar Cream.