1. Am I a good candidate for Keloid Removal?
There are several reasons you may consider keloid removal:
- Physically healthy men and women with noticeable keloid scarring.
- Realistic expectations.
You have abnormal scars that thicken and continuously grow in size.
If you are in good general health, have a positive attitude and realistic expectations, you are most likely a good candidate for this procedure.
2. What does a keloid look like?
Keloids are often round, oval, or oblong smooth-topped scars on the skin over sites of injury. However, they can be irregularly shaped with “claw-like” extensions into normal skin.
3. How long of a recovery period can I expect?
There is minimal discomfort after keloid removal. Patients can often return to work immediately following the procedure. Sutures are typically removed in 5 to 7 days. After the procedure, Dr. Hsu may schedule injections of a steroid to decrease the chance of recurrence. Other techniques to minimize recurrence may be used, such as silicone sheeting and compression therapy.
4. Where and how will you perform my procedure or treatment?
The degree of the keloid determines the type of repair needed. While sometimes the keloids are completely removed, sometimes a flap is created to preserve some overlying skin and aid in the closure. Each treatment is individualized and depends on the patient and the location of the keloid, among other factors.
- Cortisone injections (intralesional steroids): These are safe and not very painful. Injections are usually given once per month until the maximum benefit is obtained. Injections are safe (very little steroid gets into the bloodstream) and usually help flatten keloids; however, steroid injections can also make the flattened keloid redder by stimulating the formation of more superficial blood vessels. The keloid may look better after treatment than it looked to start with, but even the best results leave a mark that looks and feels quite different from the surrounding skin.
- Surgery: A concern of surgery is that cutting a keloid can trigger the formation of a similar or even larger keloid. Injecting steroids or applying pressure dressings to the wound site after cutting away the keloid can decrease the chance of recurrence.