Predisposed individuals sometimes develop keloids: excessively large scars that form spontaneously at sites of trauma. They appear as firm, smooth, hard growths. Affected areas may be sites of ear piercing or surgery, acne cysts or vaccinations. They can form on any part of the body but are most common on the chest, upper back, and shoulders. They may arise soon after injury, or develop months later. It is not known why keloids develop and most people never form keloids. Predisposed individuals can even develop a keloid after a minor injury such as an acne pimple or mild skin trauma. When a scar from a cut or wound spreads beyond the size of the original wound, it is known as a keloid.
In addition to the fact that keloid scars can itch or hurt, patients often feel they are a cosmetic disfigurement or carry negative psychosocial impact. They are usually only cosmetic; they don’t become malignant.
Various treatment options are available but no one method is considered to be universally safe and effective. Numerous keloid treatments have been attempted, but success is generally variable. Either singly or in combinations, topical therapies, intralesional corticosteroid injection, surgery, compression devices, silicone gels, radiation, and cryosurgery are all used. There is no one effective therapy for all keloids; combinations of therapies have led to the best success rates.
Raised keloids form when an excess of collagen forms within the scar. Silicone gels may be applied to reduce the excess collagen. These gels are clinically proven to be both safe and effective as a method to manage unsightly scars. They are worn directly over the scar and, though the exact mechanism of action by which silicone gel works is still unknown, they have been clinically proven to soften, flatten, and smooth scars. In addition, they relieve the itching, pain, and discomfort associated with scars. Some patients have had their scar tissue revert to normal. The silicone gel matrix we offer in the office can be easily applied to all areas of the skin, including the face and joints.