A keloid is a scar that overgrows around the wound site and can develop into different dimensions, forms, and colors. Most of these scars do not cause any pain but they can become a nuisance, and many of them may cause a tingling sensation. Keloids are benign and do not jeopardize a person’s life, however for many people, having a keloid may cause appearance issues.
A keloid scar appears as an aftermath of an anomalous wound recovery. During the healing process collagen, a protein that constitutes the fibers of the skin, is produced exceeding the normal quantities. The collagen fibers become thicker and wavier, giving way to keloid scars.
Keloids normally develop at the wound site after having experienced burns, piercings, acne, surgery, and vaccination. Sadly, specialists have not been able to figure out the exact reasons as to why this anomalous wound healing tends to happen.
There are certain elements that may contribute to the appearance of keloids:
- Hereditary factors
- Darker skin tones ( people with lighter skin tones are not exempt from developing a keloid)
Studies have concluded that currently there are no 100% effective ways to treat keloid scars, however, doctors are offering many alternatives to cope with them.
One of the most recommended options is surgical excision which consists of cutting out the keloid scar, however, some people might experience a recurrence of the scar after some time. This is why specialists also recommend combining this procedure with other treatments such as the injection of steroids directly into the scar. Steroids help to make the scar less protuberant and also diminish pain, reddening and sensitivity. They are a mainstay for prevention and treatment.
Laser therapy is also a good alternative. This therapy can greatly help to make the appearance of the keloid less prominent, hence providing better cosmetic results. Laser therapy may also be used in conjunction with steroid injections. More than one laser session may be needed to get more effective results.
Interferon injections are another option for all those who need to treat a keloid scar. This procedure involves the increasing of the protein called Interferon, which is generated by the immune system, and it is the one responsible for protecting the organism against various attacks. This protein can be very helpful in lessening the protuberance of the scar since it also helps to decrease the production of collagen.
Cryotherapy has also been known to cause a positive effect on these scars. This therapy is carried out by applying extreme cold, which causes the scar to become flat and slough off. One of the downsides of this method is that the affected area might become dark.
Other treatment options available are radiation therapy and silicone gel dressings which have been recommended by specialists. Nevertheless, all the alternatives should always be discussed with a professional to get the best advice as to which of them is more suitable.
Many people opt for natural medicine but it is important to be aware of the fact, that even if it works for one person, this does not mean it will have the same results on another individual.