When the skin continuity is broken by a cut by surgery or by injury, the body forms scar tissue to unite the cut ends. The amount of the scarring could vary due to various factors like, the person's age, heredity, race, skin characteristics and the type, direction, depth, size and location of the wound.
Scars are permanent and cannot be removed. (If one scar is removed by surgery, the body forms another scar in the same place). But, the appearances of many scars can be improved upon by various surgeries like revision scar surgery, permabrassion, by Tissue expander.
After suturing a wound, during the first two weeks of healing the basic scar is formed. During the next eight weeks the scar overgrows (proliferates). At the end of the proliferative stage the scar is red slightly raised and somewhat lumpy. It takes approximately 6 to 9 months from the time of injury or surgery for a scar to fully mature. A matured scar is pale or white, soft and flat. (The younger the age of the patient, the longer the time to mature).
By scar revision or scar correction operations many scars can be improved upon in their appearances or the amount of the scars can be reduced or the disfigurement can be corrected. These scar correction operations are not undertaken until the original scars are fully matured. There are rare exceptions to this rule.
There are scars that cannot be improved upon by surgery. When a scar is removed by scar correction operation the body in its place forms a new scar. So, a scar cannot be removed, it can only be revised.
The aim of the purpose of scar revision is to make the old scar look better or less noticeable. This is done by removing the old scar and making a new scar in the same direction, like in a horizontal scar of the forehead or by altering the direction of the scar - like in a vertical scar of the forehead, where the new scar is made into a zigzag line, so that it blends better with the normal horizontal lines of the forehead. Some scars are improved upon by Dermabrasion (like small pox scars or pimple scars). Dermabrasion means sanding of the skin and it is almost like sanding the wood. Patients with darker complexion are not good candidates for Dermabrasion surgery. Also patients with deeper scars get less improvement than patients with superficial scars by Dermabrasion surgery.
Most scar revision procedures are done in the operating room under local or general anesthesia. Usually does not require over night stay in the hospital.