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What Are Keloids?

Scarring is your body’s way of protecting itself, and it pays little heed to the visible aftermath once the job is complete. In most cases, scar tissue isn’t excessive as it simply covers the damaged skin to shore up your skin’s protective shield. With keloids, however, your body’s scarring mechanism jumps into overdrive, creating scars that are often far larger than the original problem.

At Z-Roc Dermatology, Drs. Khongruk Wongkittiroch and Matthew Zarraga lead a team of skin experts who have considerable experience helping our patients clear away the wreckage of the past. With advanced laser technology and evidence-based treatments, we’re able to tackle cosmetically concerning scarring and restore your smooth skin, even when it comes to keloids.

Here’s a look at how a keloid differs from normal scarring and how we can go about removing these disproportionate growths.

Scarring 101

The average human skin covers a whopping 22 square feet, making it the body’s largest organ. Also large is your skin’s role in providing a barrier between your body and the outside world, protecting and shielding you against everything from harmful bacteria to flying objects.

Since protection is its primary task, your skin is quick to react to any breach in its system by sending in a flood of collagen, the protein responsible for much of your skin’s support. In its haste to repair your skin, your collagen pays little attention to the finished product, which is what leads to scarring.

Why keloids are different

In most cases, scarring covers your wounded area and no more. With keloids, however, extra scar tissue forms raised, hard scars that are often far bigger than the original problem. Not only are these scars more prominent by virtue of size, they can also be a different color than your natural skin tone, making them even more noticeable.

The primary issue with these scars is cosmetic, as the fibrous tissue doesn’t pose any real threat outside of itchiness.

When it comes to who develops keloid scars, there are a few factors that may place you more at risk, though it’s worth mentioning that 10% of people in the United States have keloid scars. Some of the risk factors include:

The scarring doesn’t favor one gender over another, as men and women develop keloid scarring equally.

Treating keloid scars

Traditionally, treating keloid scars has been difficult, as surgical removal almost always leads to even more aggressive regrowth of scar tissue. At our practice, we’ve found several ways to work around this using:

This last point is one worth underscoring, as our laser technology provides a noninvasive way to break up your scarring, paving the way for more normal-looking skin to take its place.

If you’d like to explore your treatment options for getting rid of unsightly keloids, contact our office in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, to set up a consultation.

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