Proper technique and exquisite attention to detail
Scars represent the body’s inherent healing response to injury. In an attempt to repair itself and restore lost tissue, collagen and other connective tissue is rapidly produced by cells, also known as fibroblasts, within the skin. Scars can come from environmental injury to the skin (ie. traumatic scars), medical procedures (ie. postsurgical scars), or medical conditions that cause chronic inflammation within the skin (ie. acne scarring). Although scarring is an evolutionarily adaptive mechanism that allows our skin to interface with a dynamic environment, scars can also be an unwanted physical reminder of an event or a medical condition, and can be perceived as aesthetically undesirable.
What is Scar Revision?
There are many treatment methods to improve the appearance of scars. Scar revision is the general term used to describe cosmetic and functional scar enhancement. Surgical scar revision is the most traditional and one of the most powerful methods of improving the appearance of scars. When performed with precision, skill, and experience, the outcome can be superior to results obtained from lasers, microneedling, or dermabrasion. Proper technique, exquisite attention to detail, a profound understanding of tissue dynamics, and the correct sutures must be utilized to ensure minimal visibility of the scar. Surgical scar revision may not be appropriate for all types of scars, and is more often used to correct an existing unsightly postoperative scars.
Laser surgery is another commonly used approach to improve the appearance of scars. The exact type of laser utilized depends on the type of scar to be treated. Pulsed dye lasers are often used to minimize red discoloration of early stage scars, while nonablative fractional lasers can be used to homogenize older, white scars.
More recently, microneedling has been found to be a highly effective nonsurgical tool in normalizing the discoloration and textural differences of scar tissue. This treatment method is utilized when a less invasive option is desired or when surgical scar revision is not an appropriate option. Microneedling is a highly precise and controlled procedure that works similarly to a fractional nonablative laser, but can be applied to various segments of skin with less concern about blending in with nontreated skin.
Sometimes, scars may require a combination approach that involves multiple treatment modalities. This is applicable for complex scars with unique characteristics that cannot be addressed with traditional unidimensional methods. During your consultation, Dr. Tzu will review your medical history, consider any unique characteristics of your scar type and location, and formulate a customized treatment plan, whether it involves a single or combination treatment method, that will optimize the aesthetic outcome of your scar.