While laser resurfacing is a tremendously beneficial treatment for facial rejuvenation and improving skin tone and texture, lasers may also effectively treat excessive and abnormal scarring. How can laser skin resurfacing make such a dramatic difference?
Understanding Scar Development
The formation of scars is actually a natural part of the body’s normal healing process. The thick, raised appearance is actually a buildup of collagen, which is necessary for aiding in skin regrowth. However, sometimes wounds don’t heal as expected. Keloids and hypertrophic scars are two examples of this type of abnormal tissue growth:
- Hypertrophic scars result from an overproduction of collagen, resulting in a permanently raised scar that does not flatten out and diminish as a typical scar would.
- Keloid scars are a form of hypertrophic scar, but keloids typically grow far beyond the boundaries of the wound. Although benign, they may be uncomfortable or painful.
Keloid and hypertrophic scars may require cosmetic surgery for removal. However, in some cases, the excess tissue can come back even after surgical excision.
How Laser Resurfacing Helps
When laser treatment is incorporated fairly early in the healing process, the further development of excess tissue growth may be limited or prevented because of the way the laser energy targets deeper layers of the skin. Although more effective on hypertrophic than keloid scars, the idea that there could be a positive, lasting alternative to surgical scar revision is very encouraging, even if quite a bit more research is needed to further examine these theories.