Scars are areas of fibrous tissue (fibrosis) that replace normal skin after injury. A scar results from the biological process of wound repair in the skin and other tissues of the body. Thus, scarring is a natural part of the healing process.

Scars can occur inside and outside the body and are formed when the body produces a lot of collagen that forms tissue that is thicker and tougher than the surrounding skin. As no new cells are generated where scars are, Scars often start out being very red or purple in color but usually fade to a pink or silver color over time.

Two of the most common types are hypertrophic and keloid scarring, both of which experience excessive stiff collagen bundled growth overextending the tissue, blocking off regeneration of tissues.

What is a Hypertrophic Scar?

A hypertrophic scar is a thick and raised scar in which the excess tissue remains within the boundaries of the original injury.  These are more common after a traumatic injury such as burns, but can certainly occur after a surgical procedure.

What is a keloid scar?

A keloid is a very dense and thick scar that can form in at-risk individuals after injury or surgery.  The scar response in these individuals is uncontrolled in the sense that they produce an excessive amount of collagen and fibrous tissue in the area, causing distortion, itching, and sometimes pain. 

Unlike hypertrophic scars, keloid tissue tends to grow beyond the boundaries of the original scar.

Tissue damage can occur for a number of reasons, including:

  • Cuts made during surgery – such as a Cesarean section birth

  • Injuries and accidents

  • Burns and scalds from hot objects or liquids

  • Complications of certain skin conditions, such as acne and chickenpox