Q:

Why would you have scar tissue around an old surgery scar?

A:

Quick Answer

Hard, fibrous scar tissue called a keloid can form around a surgical scar, according to Healthline. This type of scar tissue is larger than the original surgical incision and may grow over the course of weeks or months. Although doctors do not know the exact cause of keloids, they do know that people with darker skin are more likely to develop keloids, notes MedicineNet. Keloids may also be a hereditary trait.

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Full Answer

Keloids create marks that are red, pink or the color of the surrounding skin, explains Healthline. Unlike other scars, keloids grow larger as they age and may become bumpy or ribbed. However, a keloid that grows extensively may be a sign of cancer, and a doctor may recommend a biopsy.

In general, doctors categorize keloids as a cosmetic problem, according to Healthline. Although they are unsightly, most keloids only itch or create slight discomfort. Protecting the keloid from UV rays prevents sun damage that can darken the scar and make it more noticeable.

Some doctors hesitate to treat keloids because treatment can make the scarring worse, notes Healthline. Viable treatment options include corticosteroid injections to flatten the scar tissue, laser treatments, radiation and surgical removal. Sometimes moisturizing the area with oil can keep the scar tissue of the keloid soft and pliable. Some people treat their keloids with silicone sheets over the course of several months, according to MedicineNet.

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