Have an unattractive or painful scar? Below is helpful information about scar revision surgery offered by Colorado Springs plastic and reconstructive surgeon, Dr. Greg Liebscher:
Scar revision surgery is a reconstructive procedure to alter, likely minimize, the appearance of the scar. It is an ideal procedure for people who have had their skin damaged by an injury or women who have had a C-section.
The revision improves the appearance of the scar or restores function to a part of the body that may have been restricted by the scar. It is important, however, to know that scars cannot be completely removed.
In many cases, scar revision surgery is often considered a cosmetic procedure and not covered by insurance. However, if the scar is causing other medical complications, insurance may cover the procedure.
NOTE: we are currently not accepting new scar revision patients for lipoma or keloid.
To learn if you qualify for a scar revision surgical procedure, schedule a consultation with Dr. Liebscher today:
What Is a Scar?
A scar is the body’s natural way of healing and replacing lost or damaged skin. A scar is usually composed of fibrous tissue. Scars may be formed for many different reasons, including as a result of infections, surgery, injuries, or inflammation of tissue. Scars may appear anywhere on the body, and the composition of a scar may vary – appearing flat, lumpy, sunken, or colored. It may be painful or itchy. The final look of a scar depends of many factors, including the skin type and location on the body, the direction of the wound, the type of injury, age of the person with the scar, and his/her nutritional status.
C-Section Scar Removal: Can Plastic Surgery Help?
What Are the Different Types of Scars and Treatment?
There are several different types of scars to include:
Hypertrophic scars are similar to keloid scars; however, their growth is confined within the boundaries of the original skin defect. These scars may also appear red. And they are usually thick and elevated. Hypertrophic scars usually start to develop within weeks after the injury to the skin. Hypertrophic scars may improve naturally. Although, this process may take up to a year or more. Steroids may be the first line of therapy to treat hypertrophic scars. Steroids may be given as an injection or by direct application. These scars may also be removed surgically. Often, steroid injections are used along with the surgery and may continue up to two years after the surgery to help maximize healing and decrease the chance of the scar returning.
Contractures are an abnormal occurrence. They occur when a large area of skin is damaged and lost. This results in a scar. The scar formation pulls the edges of the skin together, causing a tight area of skin. The decrease in the size of the skin can then affect the muscles, joints, and tendons. This causes a decrease in movement. There are many different surgical treatment options for contractures. Some of which may include:
- skin graft or skin flap—Skin grafts or skin flaps are done after the scar tissue is removed. It involves replacing or attaching skin to a part of the body that is missing skin. Skin grafts are performed by taking a piece of healthy skin from another area of the body (called the donor site) and attaching it to the needed area. Skin flaps are similar to skin grafts, where a part of the skin is taken from another area, but with the skin flaps, the skin that is retrieved has its own blood supply. The section of skin used includes the underlying blood vessels, fat, and muscles. Flaps may be used when that area that is missing the skin and does not have a good supply of blood. This may be caused by damage to the vessels.
- Z-plasty—A Z-plasty is a procedure used to revise a scar by using a Z-shaped incision to help decrease the amount of contractures of the surrounding skin. It also may attempt to relocate the scar so that the edges of the scar look more like the normal lines and creases of the skin. Small stitches may be used to help hold the skin in place.
- tissue expansion—Tissue expansion is a newer technique being used, and involves a process that increases the amount of existing tissue available for reconstructive purposes. This procedure is often used in addition to the flap surgery.
Scar Revision Surgery Recovery
As with all surgeries, it is important to follow all instructions to help maximize recovery and healing. Your physician will advise you on all activity restrictions, depending on the type of surgery that was performed. Scars cannot be removed completely. Many factors are involved in the degree of healing of your particular scar. Some scars can take more than a year to improve post surgery.
Get More Information About Scar Revision from a Trusted Reconstructive Plastic Surgeon
If you have questions about a scar that you’d like to have minimized, call 719-634-2503 to schedule a consultation with Colorado Springs plastic surgeon, Dr. Greg Liebscher, to discuss treatment options. Cosmetic consultations are free of charge. However, reconstructive consultations are not free of charge. But they are covered by most insurances.