Why treat scars?

According to statistics of the U.S. government, Americans have an estimated 840 million scars, of which 169 million are hypertrophic or keloid, and they develop about 62 million new scars each year. Current global numbers are unknown but doubtless much higher.

Scars are often considered trivial, but they can be disfiguring and aesthetically unpleasant and cause severe itching, tenderness, pain, sleep disturbance, anxiety, depression, and disruption of daily activities. Other psychosocial consequences include development of post-traumatic stress reactions, loss of self esteem and stigmatization, leading to a diminished quality of life. Physical deformity as a result of skin scar contractures can also be functionally disabling.1

 

Scar management

Scars to date cannot be removed completely, but with an effective treatment and good patient compliance a scar appearance and its side effects can be improved significantly in most cases. In addition, the likelihood of abnormal scar formation can be reduced effectively if treatment starts shortly after wound closure.

 

1. Bayat A et al. BMJ 2003; 326:88–92