• Jay M. Pensler, M.D.
  • Chicago Plastic Surgeon
  • 680 North Lake Shore Drive
  • Suite 1125
  • Chicago, IL 60611
  • 312.642.7777
  • info@plasticsurg.org
  • Contact Dr. Pensler for a Consultation

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Scar Revision

What is a scar?

Scar revision is plastic surgery performed to improve the condition or appearance of a scar anywhere on your body. The different types of scars include:

Discoloration, surface irregularities and other more subtle scars can be cosmetically improved by surgery or other treatments recommended by your plastic surgeon. These types of scars do not impair function or cause physical discomfort and include acne scars as well as scars resulting from minor injury and prior surgical incisions.

Hypertropic scars are thick clusters of scar tissue that develop directly at a wound site. They are often raised, red and/or uncomfortable, and they may become wider over time. They can be hyperpigmented (darker in color) or hypopigmented (lighter in color).

Keloids are larger than hypertropic scars. They can be painful or itchy, and may also pucker. They extend beyond the edges of an original wound or incision. Keloids can occur anywhere on your body, but they develop more commonly where there is little underlying fatty tissue, such as on the face, neck, ears, chest or shoulders.

Contractures are scars that restrict movement due to skin and underlying tissue that pull together during healing. They can occur when there is a large amount of tissue loss, such as after a burn. Contractures also can form where a wound crosses a joint, restricting movement of the fingers, elbows, knees or neck.

The type of scar you have will determine the appropriate techniques your plastic surgeon will use to improve your scar.

Enhancing your appearance with scar revision surgery

Scars are visible signs that remain after a wound has healed. They are unavoidable results of injury or surgery, and their development can be unpredictable. Poor healing may contribute to scars that are obvious, unsightly or disfiguring. Even a wound that heals well can result in a scar that affects your appearance. Scars may be raised or recessed, different in color or texture from surrounding healthy tissue or particularly noticeable due to their size, shape or location.

Your treatment options may vary based on the type and degree of scarring and can include:

  • Simple topical treatments
  • Minimally invasive procedures
  • Surgical revision with advanced techniques in wound closure

Scar revision surgery is meant to minimize the scar so that it is more consistent with your surrounding skin tone and texture.

Although scar revision can provide a more pleasing cosmetic result or improve a scar that has healed poorly, a scar cannot be completely erased.

Is it right for me?

Scar revision is a highly individualized procedure and you should do it for yourself, not to fulfill someone elseís desires or to try to fit any sort of ideal image. Scar revision can be performed on people of any age and is a good option for you if:

  • You are bothered by a scar anywhere on your body
  • You are physically healthy
  • You donít smoke
  • You have a positive outlook and realistic goals for your scar revision surgery
  • You do not have active acne or other skin diseases in the area to be treated

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