When skin is injured, extra scar tissue may grow and form smooth and hard growths called keloids. Keloids are non-cancerous, however, they can be bothersome or painful enough for patients to seek treatment.
What are keloids?
When skin is injured from trauma, piercings, or surgery, scar tissue forms over the wound during the repair process to protect the site of injury. In certain cases, extra scar tissue may form that grows wider and bigger than the original injury, called a keloid. This can arise soon after an injury, or develop months later.
Keloid scars are usually:
- Raised above surrounding skin
- Hard and firm
Keloids are not tumours - they are scar tissue that form due to genetics and can be quite disfiguring.
Who gets keloids?
Keloid scars can affect anyone, but they are more common in younger people between the ages of 10 and 30 and people with darker skin. They also run in families
What causes keloids?
Keloids can form anywhere the skin has been injured. The source of injury can be anything from a piercing, a burn, or even acne. For some patients, even a scratch can lead to keloids.
Certain areas of the body are more prone to forming keloid scars than others, such as:
- Midline of chest
Can keloid scars be prevented?
Because the treatment of keloid scars can sometimes be difficult, the best treatment is to prevent keloids from forming in the first place. It's important to try to prevent skin injuries that could lead to keloid scarring, such as:
- Acne Scars
- Ear and body piercing
- Surgical incision sites
If you are prone to getting keloids, then it is important to start treating skin injuries right away after they have occurred.
How are keloids treated?
Keloids are difficult to treat and they may persist because they are the direct result of body's wound healing process. There is no cure for keloids, but treatment sometimes can improve how they look and feel.
At the Canadian Plastic Surgery Centre, we tend to use a combination of treatments for keloids. Depending on the size, location, and how soon it is treated, we may use:
- Cryotherapy (freezing)
- Corticosteroid injections
- Laser or light therapy
- Silicone gel
- Surgical excision
Board-certified Plastic Surgeons
Contact our clinic today to book a discreet consultation with one of our board-certified plastic surgeons to see what your keloid treatment options are.
Minor Procedures - Frequently Asked Questions
Which minor procedures are covered under OHIP?
OHIP coverage status for a procedure is not determined by your family doctor or by the surgeons at the Canadian Plastic Surgery Centre. The Ministry of Health has determined a number of procedures to be OHIP covered while others are not. Examples of skin growths and conditions that are generally not covered under OHIP are:
- Skin Cysts
- Non-suspicious Moles
If you are ever in doubt or have specific questions, please don't hesitate to contact us and we will do our best to address your concerns in a timely manner.
Who will be performing the minor procedures?
All of our patients being treated for minor procedures are seen by one of our board-certified plastic surgeons. You will get their undivided attention from the initial consultation, physical examination, and the actual procedure itself, followed by follow-up appointments to make sure that everything goes smoothly and even better healing process.
Will my procedure be painful?
All minor procedures are preceded with administration of local anesthetic. This is to ensure that the treatment area will be numb throughout the procedure and minimize any possible pain and discomfort.
Will I get a scar?
It is impossible to escape a scar after an incision is made on your skin. However, with experience and advanced surgical techniques, scarring can be minimized. Our board-certified plastic surgeons have years of experience and the technical expertise to remove your skin growths and lesions while placing strong emphasis on minimizing post-operative scarring.
When can I return to work?
This is a very good question that is difficult to answer as everyone's jobs are very different. The main goal is to minimize the physical strain and tension placed on the treatment area following your procedure. This is done to maintain the integrity of the stitches and minimize potential risk of infections and poor scarring. Our plastic surgeons will give you detailed guidance on your appropriate post-operative course.
How long will my procedure take?
This will depend on the type of procedure being performed. You will get a chance to have all your questions addressed during your private consultation with one of our board-certified plastic surgeons. If you simply forgot to ask, then please call our clinic and one of our staff will be more than happy to assist you.