The application of silicone gel products immediately following injury is one of the few known treatments that have been proven to help prevent the formation of hypertrophic scars. Since this type of scarring is often genetically predisposed in some individuals, you may know in advance whether or not you are susceptible and take extra precautions by applying silicone gel hypertrophic scar treatment immediately as a preventative measure. Be sure to inform Dr. Work of your condition prior to any surgery and be aware that body piercing, tattoos or any other injury to the skin will likely develop into a hypertrophic scar if you are susceptible to this type of scarring pattern.
Meshkinpour et al (2005) examined the safety and effectiveness of the ThermaCool TC radiofrequency system for treatment of hypertrophic and keloid scars and assessed treatment associated collagen changes. Six subjects with hypertrophic and 4 with keloid scars were treated with the ThermaCool device: 1/3 of the scar received no treatment (control), 1/3 received one treatment and 1/3 received 2 treatments (4-week interval). Scars were graded before and then 12 and 24 weeks after treatment on symptoms, pigmentation, vascularity, pliability, and height. Biopsies were taken from 4 subjects with hypertrophic scars and evaluated with hematoxylin and eosin (H & E) staining, multi-photon microscopy, and pro-collagen I and III immunohistochemistry. No adverse treatment effects occurred. Clinical and H & E evaluation revealed no significant differences between control and treatment sites. Differences in collagen morphology were detected in some subjects. Increased collagen production (type III > type I) was observed, appeared to peak between 6 and 10 weeks post-treatment and had not returned to baseline even after 12 weeks. The authors concluded that use of the thermage radiofrequency device on hypertrophic scars resulted in collagen fibril morphology and production changes. ThermaCool alone did not achieve clinical hypertrophic scar or keloid improvement. They noted that the collagen effects of this device should be studied further to optimize its therapeutic potential for all indications.
Chemical peels – The process of chemical peels, as with the surgical cutting of the skin, can sometimes seem counterproductive. In a chemical peel, you are literally using chemicals to burn the topmost layers of damaged skin, thereby forcing the body to undergo the healing process to regrow new, hopefully smoother, skin in its place. Again the severity of the scar and its location will dictate the level of chemical peel used, and some peels may actually cause keloid scar formation or infections, so be sure to get all the facts from your doctor or dermatologist before proceeding.