- Raised, pigmented tissue that develops over an injury or incision
- Itchiness or pain at the affected site
- Growth at the ears, neck, shoulders, chest, or back
in Fargo, North Dakota
Scars are a regular part of life, whether from injury, surgery, or certain skin conditions. Keloids, however, can have a largely negative effect on your self-confidence if they are unsightly and visible while wearing normal outfits. Not everyone experiences keloid scarring, but those who do understand that it can feel like they will always need to cover up.
Keloids are a type of scar that develop abnormally throughout the healing process. They can become large, raised, and pigmented, resulting in a growth that can even be larger than the wound or incision itself. These can become uncomfortable, sometimes being itchy, painful, or even a hindrance to your body’s normal movement.
Keloids are not well-understood, but there are some common factors among people that are most prone to developing them. Patients most commonly experience keloids between the ages of ten and thirty, and it’s rare that patients outside of this range develop them. Similarly, certain ethnicities are more prone to keloids, including those of African, Asian, or Hispanic descent, although even this can be dependent on location. Those prone to keloids most often have a family history of it, most commonly found within the immediate family.
The direct causes of keloids are unknown. They often occur after surgery, injury, or body modification like getting a tattoo or piercing. Unfortunately, some patients can be prone to spontaneously developing them without any manipulation of the skin. Keloids do not mean that the affected skin has become cancerous and are not the result of cancerous activity.
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There are different types of treatment for keloids, so it’s important to know what you hope to achieve with it. Some patients are not bothered by their appearance and simply want relief from pain or itchiness. Other patients want complete removal. Dr. Ness can determine the best method of treatment for your unique skin and anatomy. Treatment methods include:
- Corticosteroid Injections: A series of injections that gradually shrink the scar
- Surgical Removal: Surgical excision of the keloid tissues
- Compression Garments: A long-term pressure treatment that reduces blood flow to the area
- Laser Treatments: A series of treatments that reduce pigmentation and texture
- Silicone Therapy: A set of products used to prevent scarring from occurring after injury or surgery
- Cryotherapy: A treatment that freezes the keloid tissue without affecting the surrounding tissues
- Radiation Treatment: A series of treatments that prevents regrowth of a keloid after treatment
For most patients, effective treatment means a combination of a few of the above methods. Many patients who experience keloids also experience regrowth after certain methods, so preventative measures are an important part of keloid treatment.
After treatment, it’s important to ensure that you don’t experience further keloids since you have a high chance of experiencing additional keloids after treating one. If you opt for surgery, it’s important to discuss your history of keloids with your surgeon who can tailor your surgical plan to avoid the chance of scarring. You should also discuss your treatment options with silicone products afterward to prevent scarring. During your daily activities, you should be sure to thoroughly wash and treat wounds and wear regular sun protection. If you notice keloid scarring developing, you should immediately see Dr. Ness who can recommend a pressure garment.
When it comes to keloid treatment, it’s important to work with Dr. Ness to find the best treatments for your circumstances and lifestyle. To schedule a consultation with Dr. Ness, contact Fargo Dermatology by calling or filling out our online form.