Wednesday, August 31, 2011

True or False: A good plastic surgeon = scar-less surgery

False! (Unfortunately...)

The reality is, anytime an incision is made into the skin a scar will result. A scar by definition is the seam where the skin heals back together. It's the seam itself that can vary-from a hairline scar that is barely perceptible to one that is red, raised and hypertrophic or, at the most extreme, a keloid.

What a good plastic surgeon can do is to make it inconspicuous by putting it in a discrete place and minimizing the scar itself. But, take note, even a good surgeon is at the mercy of the healing process. The fact is, some patients are more susceptible to scarring. (This is often determined by your personal history of scarring: If you've never had any problems, chances are you'll continue on that same path, and vice versa.)

The good news is that new and innovative treatments are in development to manage less-than-ideal scars. In fact, Dr. Few will be giving a presentation at the annual meeting of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons in Denver this September on an injectable substance to limit scarring. Stay tuned for more on this hot topic!

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