Millions of people throughout the world are getting affected by the skin disorder acne at every other moment. Whether it is a bout for few months or chronic lesions lasting for years, acne often leaves us with its ugly remnants—acne scar. Oftentimes it turns out to be unsightly disfigurement of our face and other body parts breaking down our self confidence and causing immense psychological depression. Let us see what we can do to deal with these blemishes.
Treatments for Acne Scar Removal
There are a number of treatments and surgical procedures available to alleviate acne blemishes. These treatments are mainly aimed to help fade or erase acne marks permanently. Unfortunately there is no universal cure to blot out acne marks. Although one treatment process could prove to be useful for others, it might not be effective in your case. A veteran dermatologist would consider several associated factors before deciding on the best treatment for one’s scars. These might include:
- Patient’s age, health condition, and case history
- Type and severity of the scar
- Patient’s tolerance level for a certain procedure or technique
- Patient’s personal preferences
Most popular treatments available for acne scar removal are laser treatments, chemical peels, topical medications, dermabrasion, autologous fat transfer, and manual excision. Pockmark caused by acne typically look like “ice pick” pits, craterlike or keloidal scars which could be lightened over time or erased completely.
Laser treatment: There are two broad classifications for laser treatment. One is ablative or resurfacing and another is nonablative. In the former method the impinged laser radiation is absorbed by the water molecules of the cells in the affected skin surface. This absorption process is instantly followed by immediate vaporization of water from the cells causing destruction of the cells and the associated scarred cutaneous layer. Thus the damaged skin layer gets peel off and the biological process of dermal collagen production rate gets faster to cover up the area with new healthy skin. Nonablative laser techniques are noninvasive and far more effective than the former one with less downtime. It does not cause any impairment to the epidermal skin layer. In this technique the affected area is initially made extremely cool with a blast of cryogenic spray and this cooling process is instantly followed by a ray of laser beam. This heats up the sebaceous glands and triggers natural collagen formation thereby softening and flattening the deep acne scars from within without harming your skin texture.
Dermabrasion: This is one of most effective treatments available for scars. In this method initially a local anesthetic is applied onto the affected area. Then a high-speed brush or fraise is used to sand off the top layer of the skin and modulate the contour of the scar. While superficial keloidal scars could be removed altogether, the depressed scarred skin might get reduced in depth, shaping a smooth and fresh skin. However, this process is not applicable for all sorts of scars and sometimes aggravates the situation. For the non-white people it might cause change of pigmentation which needs separate medical care.
Chemical peels: Chemical peels might consist of lactic acid, salicylic acid, and trichloroacetic acid which are applied over the acne scar to remove the external layer of the skin. It is often useful to mitigate irregular pigments and outward scars leading to a normal and healthy skin.
Autologous fat transfer: In this procedure fat is collected from the patient’s own body as per required amount and it is transformed into injectable form. Then this autologous fat is injected under the shallow area of the skin. Thus the injected fat helps to lift up the depressed scar rectifying the contour of the whole area. As the fat content is eventually used up by our body we need to repeat this treatment after few months.
Subcision: This process of treatment is manly applicable for acne scars which are deep and dented due to the pulling back of scarred tissue band toward skin. The whole procedure involves the release of the skin from the scar tissue underneath by the insertion of a needle. This process often needs additional treatment procedure like injectable fillers for instance, collagen from purified bovine, hyaluronic acid, or synthetic products, to fill out the dented area as well as trigger the biological production of dermal collagen.
Topical treatment: Certain topical applications which contain retin-A and alpha hydroxy acid as key ingredients might be quite useful in improving acne as well as stimulating new collagen formation. These two chemicals help in peeling off damaged skin layer rendering a clean and healthy skin. Also a suitable sunscreen lotion is necessary to avoid sunburn on the new sensitive skin texture.
If you have severe acne condition then oftentimes acne scar formation is ineluctable. So be prepared to face the ugly aftermath of acne as early as possible so that you could successfully wipe them out of your skin.