Specific dermatological procedures to minimize scars will be determined by your healthcare provider based on:
Your age, overall health, and medical history
Severity and symptoms of the scar
Type and location of the scar
Expectations for the course of the condition
Your tolerance for specific medications, procedures, or therapies
Your opinion or preference
Scars usually fade over time. Makeup can help cover the scar while it is healing. Some scars can be minimized by certain dermatological techniques. However, treatment can only improve the appearance of a scar; it cannot completely erase it.
Dermabrasion may be used to minimize small scars, minor skin surface irregularities, surgical scars, and acne scars. As the name implies, dermabrasion involves removing the top layers of skin with an electrical machine that abrades the skin. As the skin heals from the procedure, the surface appears smoother and fresher.
Chemical peels are often used to minimize sun-damaged skin, irregular color (pigment), and superficial scars. The top layer of skin is removed with a chemical application to the skin. By removing the top layer, the skin regenerates, often improving the skin's appearance.
One type of collagen (made from purified cow collagen) is injected beneath the skin. It replaces the body's natural collagen that has been lost. Injectable collagen is generally used to treat wrinkles, scars, and facial lines. There are several other types of injectable materials that can be used also.
Punch grafts are small skin grafts to replace scarred skin. A hole is punched in the skin to remove the scar. Then the scar is replaced with unscarred skin (often from the back of the earlobe). Punch grafts can help treat deep acne scars.
Surgical scar revision.
Surgical scar revision involves removing the entire scar surgically and rejoining the skin. A new scar will form. But the goal of this surgery is to create a less obvious scar. Surgical scar revision is usually done on wide or long scars, scars that healed in an unusual way, or scars in very visible places.
These types of injections can help soften and then shrink hard scars. Keloids and hypertrophic scars often soften after intralesional steroid injections.
Laser resurfacing uses high-energy light to burn away damaged skin. Laser resurfacing may be used to minimize wrinkles and refine hypertrophic scars.
Cryosurgery can help reduce the size of scars by freezing the top skin layers. The freezing causes the skin to blister.