A keloid is a type of scar characterized by an overgrowth of scar tissue. While keloids can occur anywhere, they are most common on the chest, upper back, shoulders, and earlobes. They are most common in African Americans and Asians who are between 10 and 30 years old.
While keloids affect both sexes equally, young women with pierced ears are particularly susceptible to developing them.
What Does a Keloid Look Like?
Keloids typically develop on the site of a previous injury, but they can grow beyond the area of the original trauma. They are raised scars that are rounded, shiny and smooth.
Keloids can be brown, purple or pink. They can feel firm and rubbery or doughy, and they are often tender or itchy. A large keloid in a joint area can interfere with the joint’s function. Unlike normal scars that can fade over time, keloids are permanent unless they are removed.
How Can Keloids Be Treated?
Keloids can be difficult to treat, and many treatments yield disappointing results. Patients get the best results if they treat the keloid as soon as possible.
Some of the options offered at Georgia Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery may include the following:
- Dressings made of silicone gel sheets to shrink the keloids over time. The treatment has the advantage of being safe, and patients generally report only minimal discomfort.
- Corticosteroid injections can be given to reduce the size and discomfort of a keloid.
- BioCorneum®, which is a self-drying silicone gel used to minimize the appearance of scars.
- Radiation therapy is most effective as a preventive measure. A patient with a known susceptibility to keloids may undergo radiation therapy to prevent the scar from forming.
- During conventional surgery, the surgeon simply excises the raised part of the scar and then sutures the healthy skin back together.
- In cryosurgery with the CryoShape, the doctor treats the keloid by freezing the keloid, causing the cells within it to burst.
Regardless of the method or methods used, the patient will have to monitor the treatment site carefully. This is important for the overall success of the treatment.
If you or someone you know suffers from keloids, treatment options are available to you. With locations in Marietta and Atlanta, Georgia Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery is here to help you every step of the way.
Contact us today to schedule your appointment and learn what options we offer!