introduction and phases
of wound healing
personal factors that
affect wound healing - nutrition, fluids, smoking
personal factors that
affect wound healing - diabetes, movement, steroids,
alcohol, stress, sun exposure, other factors
surgical and post operative
factors that affect wound healing
- bromelain, vitamin K cream
scar formation and treatment
hyperbaric oxygen therapy
Normally the body will stop collagen production in a
scar when adequate strength is obtained. If collagen
production does not shut down, abnormal scars will form.
A hypertrophic scar (meaning too much growth, or overgrown
scar) is said to be present if the scar stays within
the area of the wound, but is thickened and raised.
If the scar tissue reaches out like little fingers and
extends well beyond the originally injured area, this
is called a keloid scar. Keloids are more common in
people with dark skin.
Both hypertrophic and keloid scars can cause itching,
burning, shooting nerve sensations, and an undesirable
appearance. Especially in darker skinned people or with
sun exposure, the scar can hyperpigment (darken).
Multiple treatments or a combination of treatments may
be necessary for resolution of the hypertrophic or keloid
scar. Covering the scar with a silicone dressing or
a piece of tape, applying pressure, and injections of
steroid into the scar are the most common techniques
used in scar management.
If these measures fail, scar excision followed by new
scar formation with close observation offers a second
chance at normal scar healing. (For keloid scars, the
old scar is cut out, but sometimes the outer edges are
left in place to trick the body into thinking that it
already made the scar tissue.)
Different lasers have also been used with some success
in treating scars: the preferred laser depends on the
characteristics of the scar. If your matured scar has
left a white line or white patches, either along the
incision line or on the surface of your skin, medical
tattooing (micro-pigmentation) can be performed to match
the scar to the color of the adjacent skin.
Hyperpigmented, dark brown scars can be treated with
a laser or with prescription strength hydroquinone and
acids, although the darkness often fades on its own
after a period of months to years, assuming adequate
proper sun protection. Red scars are effectively treated
with several different lasers or light treatments.
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