The deal with keloids

Wednesday, 18 September 2013

The causes of keloids and how to treat themA keloid is a harmless growth of fibrous tissue at the site of a healing scar caused by overproduction of collagen. Keloids are most common on the breastbone, upper back, and shoulder but can occur anywhere on the body.

Some people, especially those with dark skin, are more prone to developing keloids.

Signs and symptoms include:
Firm, raised, hard scars.
Colour that varies from slightly pink to very dark.
Tenderness or itching.
Continued growth and claw like projections.

Doctors do not understand exactly why keloids form in certain people or situations and not in others. Changes in the cellular signals that control growth and proliferation may be related to the process of keloid formation, but these changes have not yet been characterized scientifically.

Keloids are less common in children and the elderly. Although people with darker skin are more likely to develop them, keloids can occur in men and women of all skin types. In some cases, the tendency to form keloids seems to run in families. Keloids develop most often on the chest, back, shoulders, and earlobes. They rarely develop on the face (with the exception of the jawline).

In-office therapies:

Keloids are treated with monthly intralesional corticosteroids as well as weekly Laser Genesis treatments with the NdYag laser to reduce the redness. A series of 6 to 8 treatments are needed for best results. Botox intralesionally is experimental. At Skin Renewal we have has success with Botox combined with intralesional steroids and Laser Genesis treatments.

Other articles you may be interested in:
Alpha hydroxyl chemical peels
Extra products: Do I need them?
Feed your skin: Women
Our top five skin-saving facials
Get your body wedding-ready

Written by

Dr Maureen Allem is a GP with a special interest in Aesthetic procedures and Integrative Anti-Ageing Medicine. She is also the founder and Medical Director of national group Skin, Body and Health Renewal and Oasis Spas, with 17 centres and four Oasis spas across South Africa's major cities in Johannesburg, Pretoria, the Western Cape and KZN. Anti-ageing treatments include non-surgical, anti-aging procedures, cellulite and weight loss programmes as well as body sculpting procedures. The ultimate aim of all consultations is to provide optimal health and to restore aesthetic beauty. Health Renewal appointments involves an hour long extensive medical consultation which includes hormonal balancing, nutraceutical supplements, intravenous support and detoxification treatments. Dr Maureen has seventeen Doctors working with her using the same techniques she has spent years honing. Dr Maureen frequently travels overseas to World Anti-Ageing Congresses and Laser Forums to stay abreast of the most up-to-date non-surgical procedures.

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  1. BeautySouthAfrica

    Hi Pseudo_Kate. it would be best to ask an expert about identifying keloid scars.

    5 years ago •

  1. Pseudo_kate

    To be honest – I’m still not sure whether this means I have any or not based on the scars that I have. How is this different to normal scarring tissue in terms of identification?

    5 years ago •

  1. me

    I do not have these, but good to know there is something out there to help a person who does need help in this area.

    5 years ago •

  1. ABeauty

    Interesting, I didn’t know what keloids were.

    5 years ago •

  1. Mpoyif

    Interesting – I had never heard of this before.

    5 years ago •

  1. NaturalDiva

    Very informative article, I have seen these before but never knew what they were called or how to treat them.

    5 years ago •

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