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What are the different types of scars?

Daniel Kapp
Daniel Kapp on behalf of MDLIVE
Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery

There are several types of scars.  Scars may be normal.  That is, a small thin line barely distinguishable from the surrounding tissue, or they may be hypertrophic or keloid.  Hypertrophic scars are scars that have widened the natural borders of the original wound.  Keloid scars are widened, thickened and painful and usually grow beyond the borders of the original injury.  Commonly they can be seen in ear piercings and around the neck.  Keloid scars tend to form around the neck.  The diagnosis of a keloid scar is made by examination.  Treatments vary depending upon whether a scar is hypertrophic or a keloid.

Stuart A. Linder, MD
Plastic Surgery
There are four main types of scars. A keloid is a thick scar that is elevated and with increased collagen formation outgrows its borders. Operating on this scar can create an even worse scar. Second, hypertrophic scars are also raised and thick scars that may respond to either steroid injection and scar excision or revision.  Third, a widespread scar may be associated with increased tension with stretch and is not raised. Finally, hyperpigmented and hypopigmented scars are associated with increase or less pigment or melanin leading to discoloration.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.