Whether due to accident, surgery or other causes, when the skin is damaged, scar tissue acts to replace the original, damaged skin to help the wound close and to protect it from natural elements. Although it is impossible to predict how a scar will eventually heal, our surgeons can significantly improve the appearance of a scar on virtually any part of the body with laser scar removal or scar revision surgery in New Jersey.
For body and facial scar removal in New Jersey, choose a plastic surgeon with experience and abilities that exceed your expectations. Request your consultation online or call (856) 362-8898 to schedule your appointment.
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About Scar Revision
Every individual heals differently, and the effects of any scar are most often unique in nature. It is essential to note, however, that once a scar is present, it will never entirely disappear. The blemish may be made less conspicuous, but some mark will always be present. Our cosmetic surgeons are experienced in the surgical excision of scar tissue through the reconstruction of the wound with either re-approximation of the tissue (Z-plasty), laser treatments, injections, flap reconstruction or skin grafts — all designed to lighten or diminish the scar's appearance.
How Does Laser Scar Removal Work?
Laser scar removal reduces and lightens the appearance of a scar. The treatment also reduces itching and irritation caused by the scar.
Ablative laser treatment essentially vaporizes the surface layer of scarred skin cells, allowing new skin cells and collagen to grow as the area heals. Non-ablative lasers work by heating up the underlying tissue without removing the surface layer. These lasers build new collagen and reduce redness. You may need a series of laser treatments to get the best results.
Laser scar removal won’t completely eliminate the appearance of a scar, but it makes the scar far less noticeable and obvious. Most patients are happy with the feeling that the scar isn’t attracting attention after laser revision.
Who is an Ideal Candidate for Scar Removal?
If you are in good general health, you may be a good candidate for scar removal. Our doctors have substantial experience performing a variety of surgical and non-surgical scar revision techniques. The treatments and procedures that are performed today can address various types of scarring, including keloid scars, contractures, facial scars, and hypertrophic scars.
How Soon After the Procedure Can I See My Results?
Scarring can be a challenging issue to deal with. After scar revision treatment, it is possible that your scar may look worse for some time. With proper care and a lot of patience, you can see gradual improvements in the texture and color of your skin. Complete healing after scar revision, in which your skin color and texture reach their optimal state, may take 12 months.
How Long Does the Z-Plasty Procedure Take?
If you are a candidate for Z-Plasty scar revision, your doctor will discuss your unique case in more detail at your consultation. The entire revision procedure may take one to three hours. The treatment may be performed in a surgical suite or outpatient surgical center, and you can expect to go home the same day. You will be awake for your procedure but will receive local or regional anesthesia that will numb the surgical site.
Will the Results of My Scar Removal Look Natural?
The goal of scar revision is to reduce the cosmetic and physical effects of your scar tissue. The procedure does not eliminate scarring altogether because, by its very nature, scar revision may cut or inflame the skin. Your doctor performs treatment using the very best techniques such as relocating incisions to natural creases, breaking up scar tissue with medication, or lightening the skin using laser or light therapies. When you consult with a plastic surgeon trained in scar revision procedures, you can obtain the information that you need to set realistic expectations for your appearance after treatment.
Can You Remove Old Scars?
It’s never too late to reduce the appearance of a scar. It is always best case scenario to treat a scar right after it is healed, but that doesn’t mean we can’t reduce and lighten the appearance of an old scar. When you visit us for a consultation, the plastic surgeon will examine the scar and let you know what your options are for addressing it given the age and other factors.
Your Scar Revision Procedure
There are different methods to diminish the appearance of scars. During your consultation, the surgeon recommends the best approach after an examination and discussing your aesthetic goals. Scar revision procedures in general are either non-surgical or surgical.
These range from creams and ointments to dermabrasion and laser scar revision. Laser treatment is one of the most effective procedures to diminish the appearance of scars without surgery. Its benefits include:
- Little to no downtime
- Simple procedure with minimal discomfort
- Quick, non-invasive treatment sessions
- Excellent scar revision outcomes
Scar revision surgery is especially useful for facial scars. The primary scar revision technique, called Z-plasty, has different goals, depending on the nature of the existing scar. It can:
- Lengthen a contracted scar
- Change the direction of a scar to better align it with relaxed skin tension lines
- Interrupt and break a scar so it is camouflaged
How to Prepare for Laser Scar Removal?
We will provide a detailed list of pre- and postoperative instructions for you to follow. As you get ready for scar removal, here are some things you can do:
- Schedule a consultation
- Be prepared to discuss your goals and expectations related to scar revision
- Learn about the associated risks, benefits, and likely outcomes
- Schedule your laser scar removal appointment
- You must avoid sun exposure on the treatment area, for the required number of weeks prior
- Get plenty of rest and eat well so your body is set up for a successful healing process
- Wear comfortable clothing to your appointment
We ensure each of our patients are ready and well-equipped for their appointments. We want you to enjoy a safe and satisfactory experience at our practice.
What is the Z-Plasty Procedure?
Z-plasty is a plastic surgery technique to revise scars. In the procedure, a Z-shaped incision is made across the scar and some unscarred skin as well. The incision creates two pointed flaps of skin, which are used to interrupt the scar and make the scar less tight. In the end, the scar may actually be longer than it was before, but it won’t be as obvious and the scarred skin won’t be so uncomfortably tight.
Aftercare for Z-Plasty Procedure
If you were under general anesthesia for the procedure, we will supervise your recovery for a period of time. You will return home the same day. You will have printed aftercare instructions to refer to. They will include things like taking prescribed pain medications as directed, changing bandages, bathing without getting water on the area, keeping the area clean and lubricated, and staying out of the sun while the area heals.
You will also need to avoid stretching or exerting the treatment area while it heals. The skin must be left to repair itself without causing further damage to the scar.
Are There Any Risks or Side Effects Associated with Laser Scar Removal?
Laser scar removal does carry some risk. The level of risk is influenced by the severity of the scarring, your skin tone, and the type of laser your doctor uses to break up the scar tissue. The most common side effects of laser scar removal include swelling, skin crusting, temporary discomfort, and minor bleeding. There is a risk of infection, as well as worsening appearance. Often, scars look worse after the revision procedure. This is usually a temporary condition that resolves as the tissue heals.
What Is The Cost of Scar Removal?
As is the case with all cosmetic procedures, the cost of scar removal procedures depends on the technique used and the extent of the procedure. Of course, the price of creams or ointments is going to be significantly less than that of scar revision surgery. Ultimately, if you're considering scar revision treatment the most important consideration should be finding a qualified plastic surgeon who is experienced in various scar revision techniques.