What are scars and stretch marks?
Normal scars occur after injury, are immediate in onset, flat and asymptomatic. Hypertrophic scars are characterized by red, itchy, raised fibrous lesions that typically do not expand beyond the boundaries of the initial injury and can undergo partial spontaneous resolution. The overlying skin is typically smooth, and the lesion is firm to palpation. These lesions may appear anywhere on the body, but they are more frequent on the earlobes, upper chest, and upper back. Hypertrophic scars remain limited to the traumatized area and regress spontaneously within 12-24 months, although regression may not necessarily be complete. Over time, hypo- or hyperpigmentation may occur. Keloids are the result of an overgrowth of dense fibrous tissue that usually develops after healing of a skin injury. The tissue extends beyond the borders of the original wound, does not usually regress spontaneously, and tends to recur after excision.
Stretch marks are atrophic scars that can appear pink, purple, blue, grey or white in color. Typically resulting from rapid growth or weight gain, they are most commonly found on the abdomen, upper arms, thighs, breasts, and buttocks. Stretch marks may also be caused by hormonal fluctuations associated with puberty, pregnancy, hormone replacement therapy and bodybuilding.
Scar/Stretch Mark Treatment
Surgical removal of keloids is almost always followed by even more aggressive regrowth of scar tissue. Early lesions are often reddish and become brownish red and then pale as they age. Scar Treatments options for both hypertrophic scars and keloids include intralesional corticosteroid and immunomodulating injections, cryosurgery, excision, radiation, the Cynosure/Palomar Non-Ablative Fractionated 1540nm Erbium laser and the Cynosure/Palomar Ablative Fractionated 2940nm Erbium laser.
Stretch mark treatment options including topical scar creams and the Cynosure/Palomar Non-Ablative Fractionated 1540nm Erbium laser have shown to significantly decrease the visible appearance of stretch marks.
For your Scar Treatment consultation, our physicians at Z-ROC Dermatology will gladly discuss which treatment options would be best suited to fit your needs.