What are Keloids?
When skin is injured, fibrous tissue, called scar tissue, forms over the wound to repair and protect the injury. In some cases, scar tissue grows excessively, forming smooth, hard growths called keloids. Keloids can be much larger than the original wound. They’re most commonly found on the chest, shoulders, earlobes, and cheeks. However, keloids can affect any part of the body.
Although keloids aren’t harmful to your health, they may create cosmetic concerns.
How can Keloids be treated?
Cortisone injections (intralesional steroids): These are safe and not very painful. Injections are usually given once every four to eight weeks into the keloids) and usually help flatten keloids; however, steroid injections can also make the flattened keloid redder by stimulating the formation of more superficial blood vessels. (These can be treated using a laser;) 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.
Keloids Treatment using Lasers
Laser therapy is a relatively new treatment modality for keloids and hypertrophic scars. In particular, the utilization of specific laser platforms has emerged as a successful strategy in the treatment of symptomatic hypertrophic scars.
The pulsed-dye laser can be effective at flattening keloids and making them look less red. Treatment is safe and not very painful, but several treatment sessions may be needed. Laser light of wavelengths between 1000 and 1500 nm (also known as non-ablative lasers) have been successfully used for reducing keloids and hypertrophic scars. At these wavelengths, the laser energy is not absorbed by the superficial water-containing tissue, allowing deep penetration into the dermis. Non-ablative laser systems create wounds in the dermis, inducing collagen remodeling in the process.