What is Keloid?
The keloid occurs due to the overgrowth of scar tissue called collagen, a protein that develops around damaged skin and helps the wound to seal. This type of scar tends to be larger than the original wound itself and may take weeks or months to develop completely.
The main characteristics of the keloid are great thickness, hardening, and reddish color, besides being able to present itches and pain. Some keloids grow up to 30 cm.
The places most likely to develop keloid are the shoulders, back, and breasts because they are areas of greater thickness. However, they may also appear on the ears after piercing with earrings and piercings.
Most types of skin lesions may contribute to the development of the keloid, such as:
- Acne scar ;
- Burns ;
- Varicella scar;
- Body piercing;
- Scratches and bruises;
- Locations where a surgical incision occurred;
- Places where vaccination occurred.
There is still no consensus among physicians to understand exactly why keloids form, but it is believed that it may be related to the individual’s genetics, that is, you are more likely to develop keloids if you inherited the genes from your parents.
Although keloid can affect any person, some risk groups are more likely to develop it. Are they:
- Afro-descendant people;
- People who are in the age range between 10 and 20 years;
- People with Asian and Hispanic ancestry.
Keloid can appear in both male and female people; however, it is most often noticed in women.
Symptoms of keloid
Keloid symptoms may include:
- Body area showing a pink or red color;
- A lumpy area of the skin that is usually raised;
- The area that continues to grow with scar tissue over time;
- Skin or itchy skin.
Keloids may have itching, but they are not harmful to health. You may come to feel discomfort or irritation when it comes to rubbing your skin with clothing.
You may also experience various keloids on your body, and the hardened appearance may make it difficult to move.
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How is keloid diagnosed?
The diagnosis of a keloid can be made by a medical specialist, called a dermatologist, or by a general practitioner.
However, the doctor may not be able to differentiate the keloid from a hypertrophic scar, and with that, decide to perform a biopsy of a piece of skin. Thus, it is possible to rule out other diseases that occur in the skin, and that may confuse the diagnosis, ensuring appropriate treatment.
Difference between keloid and hypertrophic scar
Both keloid and hypertrophic scars are abnormal forms of skin healing, as they lead to the appearance of large scars that can be aesthetically uncomfortable.
The keloid can take 3 to 4 months to appear and is a denser, embossed scar that has a more reddish color. In people who have a darker skin color, the keloid may also be darker.
It is common in keloid to have itching and pain in the injured region, especially after the first few weeks where the wound was performed; however, the main feature of the keloid is that it is not restricted to the area where the skin was injured. The keloid tends to “invade” the healthy areas of the skin and around the wound, and can continue to spread over the years.
The hypertrophic scar appears in the injured area about two weeks later. In the first few months, it may even be large and reddish but tends to remain only in the area of the skin that is injured.
Another significant difference is that the hypertrophic scar may regress over time. This process can take around 1 to 2 years, in which the scar will become increasingly thin and similar to the color of the skin.
Does keloid have a cure? What is the treatment?
There are several treatments for keloid. They can vary from patient to patient and also with the size of the proportion of the lesion.
Ointments for keloid
There are some ointments indicated for the keloid treatment that are available in the market. Are they:
The product is a gel whose formula was created specifically to improve the skin with scars visible.
Cicatricure promises repair of texture, decrease, and improvement of scar color. The average price is around R $ 45.00.
It has a gel-like appearance and is transparent in color. The product helps maintain the moisture balance of the skin while helping to keep the surface to be healed.
The central promise is relief from itching and discomfort, as well as help decrease skin discoloration in the injured area. Its price varies around R $ 80.00.
It can be used to prevent the formation of keloids in surgeries, trauma, or burns.
It should be used to reduce scars when the wound is already closed. It can be found for an average price of $ 215.00.
The primary purpose of this ointment is to improve the appearance of the scar, which can occur after burns, amputations, and surgical interventions.
It can be used both in keloids and in hypertrophic scars, which may cause movement limitation. Its average price is R $ 45,00.
Besides ointments, some cosmetic treatments can also be effective for keloid; they are:
This treatment consists of the application of a chemical solution on the skin that, when contacted with it, helps to regenerate the layers and to fight other scars that may exist.
It is the most suitable treatment for keloids that are at the beginning or are still small. Helps in scar reduction and irritation, as the drug is injected directly into the lesion at intervals ranging from four to six weeks.
Treatment is done by freezing the lesion with liquid nitrogen and helps to reduce the size of the keloid, making it lighter and leaving the lump smaller. However, it is essential to note that this treatment can leave the skin clearer where medicine has been applied.
This therapy consists of exposing the skin to a laser that heats its superficial layer, the epidermis, and part of the dermis.
The laser moves through the entire length of the scar and removes the most affected layers, causing the more natural layers of the skin to be exposed, which reduces the bulge and helps in whitening the keloid.
This treatment can be done before surgical procedures and in people who already tend to develop a keloid. Radiation is applied where there is a need to create cuts to reduce the risk of scarring.
Some home treatments can be done to prevent and treat the appearance of keloids; however, it is worth mentioning that there is no guarantee of safety or proof of the real benefits of these treatments.
It is also recommended that during these treatments, you avoid sun exposure.
Sandal powder with pink water
Make a paste with these two ingredients and apply it over the scar every night until the scar starts to become smaller.
Massaging the keloid with some ingredients may help reduce the scar. These foods are lemon juice, honey, apple vinegar diluted in water, or essential oils of marigold.
You must strengthen your immune system by consuming foods rich in vitamins C and E, which act directly on the restoration of the skin.
Keloids are difficult to conceal because they are protruding, which can end up causing aesthetic discomfort. Therefore, you must follow all medical recommendations so that the treatment has a satisfactory result.
Exposure to the sun can cause scarring of the scar, so avoid being exposed for long periods in the sun. However, if sun exposure is essential, you can cover the keloid with a bandage.
How to disguise the keloid with makeup
In addition to the treatment, if the keloid is bothering you aesthetically, you can cover the scar with makeup, using a base with high coverage and concealer to disguise the imperfection.
When applying the makeup to cover the keloid, do not put the excess product, as this can cause the makeup to look craquelure. Try to use good quality products, which are waterproof and have full coverage, so a layer of the products will suffice.
If necessary, before starting makeup, prepare your skin with a primer or a moisturizer to ensure that makeup stays on longer.
It is important to remember that keloids that are very protruding or irregular are more difficult to disguise.
Keloids are not a health problem per se; however, because of their size, they can detract from the aesthetics of the patient.
When they are huge, they can cause a specific limitation of mobility in areas of the body that have been affected. Also, they can cause discomfort, tenderness in the injured region, and irritation with the friction caused by the clothing.
How to prevent keloid?
If you have a personal or family history of keloids, you should seek to avoid situations that may lead to keloids.
If you have had keloid at least once, the most sensible thing to do is to avoid implanting piercings, especially in the ear and nose regions, which are the most sensitive regions of the body.
Keloid is an exaggerated growth of scar tissue called collagen, and although it does not pose health risks, it can bother many people when it comes to aesthetics. So share this article, so all your friends know how to treat the keloid.