When an injury is healing, scar tissue is formed over it and covers the injury. Keloid scar is an overgrowth scar tissue which sometime grows larger and lorger than the original injury itself. This scar usually presents in vary size, shape and color. Most of them are not painful, but it ma person who has keloid scar may feel itchy sensation at its site. In short, it will not put you in a medical danger situation, but it may be a stressfully cosmetic concern.
What are the causes of keloid scars ?
Unfortunately, the causes are still unclear. But it often occurs to the person who has these types of wound : burn injury, injury caused by ear piercing, stretches, surgical wounds and vaccination sites. But even a minor injury may result a keloid scar.
The keloid scars are formed as the result of abnormal healing process. There is a protein called collagen which responsible to make fibres to cover the wound in healing process, but in this case, the collagen are produced in an excessive amount. The layer of these fibres becomes thicker and thicker, and then forms a keloid scar.
There are some risk factors which lead to keloid scar formation :
- Genetic factor
A person may develop a keloid scar because one of her or his family members also has the same problem. There is a gene called ANHAK which may responsible to form a keloid scar, since people who inherits this gene seems has more risk to develop keloid scars than people who do not have the gene. This gene may inherit from one of parents.
- Skin color and types.
People with dark skin tones (for example the native of West Africa or Southern India) have more risk in developing keloid scars. Asian and Latin skin type also has the same risk. But it does not means that another skin color is an exception.
How to treat keloid scars?
Here are the available treatments for keloid scars :
- Removal surgery
As its name, this surgery is done to remove the unwanted keloid scar by cutting it away. This procedure has a risk : the keloid scar may regrow, but another treatment such as steroid injection can prevent this possibility.
A pulsed –dye laser which flattens keloid scars and lessens the redness of the scars, a person may have to take several laser sessions. It may be combined with steroid injection.
- Cortisone injections
It is an injection which is given once every four weeks or one injection for eight weeks in order to flatten the keloids. It may cause side effects such as the keloids become redder.
- Steroid injection
This injection lessens the possibility of raising scar and reduces the pain caused by the scars.
- Interferon injection
This injection is given to increase the protein called interferon to reduce the size of keloid scar. How does it happen? Interferon is a type of protein which is produced by our immune system to fight any challenge (in this case is abnormal growth fibres which cause keloid scar). As the result, the keloid scar can be flattened or becomes smaller.
- Florouracil and bleomycin injection
Usually, this is an injection to prevent cancer, but it is also used to treat keloid scars.
A method which use nitrogen to freeze the keloid scar, as the result the scar becomes flattened but it may be followed by a side effect such darkened the treated skin.
Radiation is also one of the treatment which available for keloid scars.
- Other treatments such as silicon pad and dressing to press the keloid scar are also recommended.
Is there any home remedy for keloid scars?
There are many home remedies which are suggested by some people or websites, but unfortunately, the effectivity of home remedies for keloid scars is still doubted. Since some people say that several remedies work on their scars, but the others who exactly do the same to their keloid scars do not agree. That’s why at this point, the best way to treat keloid scars is by doing one of the medical treatment that have been mentioned above.