Facial scarring has been a source of low self-esteem for men, women, and children throughout history. Facial scarring is usually caused by pervasive cystic acne, trauma, burns, surgery, or a result of aggressive chicken pox. Scars form as part of the body’s healing process whenever multiple layers of skin are injured. Facial scars can negatively affect a patient’s self-esteem and social life. Many of these patients seek treatment to improve the appearance or texture of their facial scars.
Facial Scar Treatment
What are my options?
There are multiple treatment modalities that doctors can choose from today. Options include excisional surgery, punch grafting, soft tissue augmentation, laser skin resurfacing, chemical peels, microdermabrasion, and dermabrasion.
What treatment is best for me?
Based on the goals and expectations discussed during your consultation with Dr. Potter, an assessment of the nature of your scars, your expectations and explain the probable outcome of your procedure. The doctor will prescribe the most appropriate treatment to achieve your expectations. You may be shown several before and after treatment photographs of patients with similar scars, and your surgeon will explain the procedure you can expect to receive and the results that you can anticipate.
The Facial Scar Treatment Procedures
The following procedures are usually performed on an outpatient basis and usually require local anesthesia.
Excisional Surgery is the cutting away of scar tissue. Punch grafting is the removal of the scar tissue and replacement with a graft of good, healthy skin.
Scar & Wrinkle release is a minimally-invasive technique (also known as “undermining” or “subcision”) that breaks apart the depressed scars, deep creases, or fine lines with a special needle or instrument. New tissue is created that raises the scar or unwanted depression. It is also used to smooth wrinkles. The procedure takes about an hour.
Dermal Filler Injections are good treatments for shallow and deep scars. These fillers can be injected into the area of the scar, smoothing depressions. Results are immediately apparent. Patients usually require touch-up treatments every 6 months to 2 years.
Microdermabrasion can be likened to a “superficial skin polishing” using micro crystals vacuumed through a delicate hand piece. In as little as 20 minutes, this gentle abrasive technique efficiently produces satisfying results. Treatments are progressive and are applied through a course of weekly sessions.
Chemical Peels use a chemical solution to gently burn away, in a controlled fashion, the fine outer layers of the skin. The solutions are available in several strengths, depending on the degree of peeling desired. Healing of the skin tissue can take from 3 days to 3 weeks. A new, smoother layer of skin is then formed.
Non-Ablative Laser Treatments are not painful and there is no downtime. Most patients receive a series of about 5 treatments. Depending on the type of scar, improvement can be dramatic. The improvement is gradual and continues to improve even after the treatment stops.
Fractional skin resurfacing treats facial scars by delivering the laser’s energy in microbeams. Fractional treatments promote the production softer, smoother skin.
Laser Resurfacing gives your physician precise control as the procedure gently vaporizes the damaged or acne-scarred skin to reveal the smooth, fresh skin underneath. Scars are removed in a precise, rapid, bloodless fashion achieving excellent results. Laser scar removal can be performed with local anesthesia if limited areas are treated, while full face resurfacing is usually performed with the administration of intravenous sedation by an anesthesiologist. Both procedures may be performed in our office.