News presenter: A procedure or injury sometimes it can be a toss-up when it comes to how your body will heal, Baton Rouge plastic surgeon Dr. Anthony Stephens is here to talk about the scars and marks left behind so no one really likes scars no one wants a scar, right?
Anthony Stephens: No one wants a scar but it’s an inevitable result of you know a surgical incision or a trauma that we’ve sustained like a fall we’re all are going to form a scar and that is the end result of healing and my partner used to say we’re not forming a scar, we’re not healing so it’s a lot that goes into forming a scar unfortunately all surgeons are measured by how their wounds look afterwards, so what goes into this, you know if we have a traumatic injury, we have a fall versus a surgical incision, those ones are going to look different than a traumatic injury and so if we make a clean cut it’s less trauma and we are likely to heal much better than if we don’t have a fall. If we have a skin color let’s say that the skin is very dark we’re likely to form more of a scar than if the skin or fair so we know that there are some things that go into wound healing and scar formation that we can control, but unfortunately the majority of it is something that we cannot, genetics or how our parents scar you know from one scar to the next. So all that’s important, so even if that happens we can still form abnormal scars as in a hypertrophic scar or we can even form keloids that we see in darker skin and the difference there is that the skin as we see here hypertrophic versus a keloid on the ear where the wound actually heals by forming a scar outside the bounds of the wound. This is a wound that we see here, that was treated with a steroid injection and it’s one of the things that we can do to help wounds by injecting the steroids but there’s no free rite, it can make the scar widen and so various treatment options have been proposed and we’re still using them, everything from topical agents which we can see here, this is a silicone gel sheeting that’s been placed over a scar and we really don’t know why this works but it does it’s either the pressure of the silica or the silicone itself into making this wound better.
News presenter: And what did you bring with you here
Anthony Stephens: Yeah we brought some of this and this is an example of the silicone sheeting that we actually put over the wound and you actually wear it for you know, the first two to three months after the wound is healed.
News presenter: That’s a pretty long time, but it helps.
Anthony Stephens: It’s a pretty long time, yeah well and I tell you I think all of these have their place, even some of the scar recovery gels that we have here the med derma which is one of the more popular ones and these have either a plant extract in it and that Derma is really onion extract all the way to some of the silica gel products that we see here and they and they all have their place really, but none of these are a magic bullet, they’re not going to make a scar go away even.
News presenter: It depends on a number of factors.
Anthony Stephens: It depends on a number of factors, lasers can help with the skin color, but you know what your best friend is when it comes to scars, is time.
News presenter: Of course.
Anthony Stephens: If you give it time and you’re patient it will improve, well you know.
News presenter: Right, thanks so much Dr. Anthony Stephens we appreciate it. We’ll be right back