Scars are spots on the body that are made of fibrous tissue, which replaces normal skin tissue after an injury. Scarring is the result of the body repairing skin tissue damage, which is part of the body's injury healing process. Any wound on the skin leaves scar tissue, although if the injury is very minor, you cannot visibly see the scar.
Scar tissue is cross-linked, as well as aligned in a single direct formation of the collagen protein tissue as opposed the normal randomized formation. Three unique properties of scar tissue are: a lower resistance to UV rays, the sweat glands do not grow back, and hair does not grow back.
One cause of major scar tissue is a heart attack, with scar formation occurring in the heart muscle. There are many causes of scar tissue. It is important to understand how scarring occurs.
The body uses scar tissue as a natural bandage to an injury. An injury is not considered healed until a completed scar is done developing on the wound. An excess of collagen is formed creating a matrix arrangement of fibers that are much denser than normal skin cells. The technical term for scarring is fibroblast proliferation, with a blood clot being the first reaction.
Scars occurs when the bottom layer, the dermis, is heavily damaged. As collagen is overproduced, cell communication and regeneration are severed from the new tissue, resulting in generation of skin with a a new texture.
Keloid scars are hypertrophic creating a raised red lump. These scars can be caused by surgery, accidents, acne, and body piercings. These hypertrophic scars are most common on the shoulders and chest.
Atrophic scars are the opposite of hypertrophic. These scars are sunken down into the skin as opposed to being raised up. This is due to fat and muscle being lost in the area. The main causes of atrophic scars are acne, chickenpox, skin diseases, and of course surgery or accidents.
Probably the most well-known form of scarring is stretchmarks. Stretchmarks are caused by rapid skin tension associated with pregnancy, quick weight gain, or growth spurts. Stretchmarks generally improve in appearance over several years.
There are several treatments for scar tissue formation, but nothing completely removes scar tissue. Ace inhibitors have been shown to reduce hypertrophic scarring over a small period of time. Bark extract in combination with cetrimide cream are also effective during the healing process.
There are surgical methods such as chemical peels, collagen injections, dermabrasion, and laser surgery. The problem with a surgical method is that it leaves its owns scars. Surgeons take into account an effort to minimize scarring. The most common sense methods are special ointments, topical remedies, and creams. These generally help in removing the visibility of scar tissue. These products can all be found at your local pharmacy or drug store.