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Scar Care Protocol: What's Normal & When to Worry

By: Austin-Weston


You made the exciting decision to undergo cosmetic surgery and now you have to focus on healing properly to achieve the best results from your procedure. Most patients are concerned with what type of scarring will be visible once they are fully healed. In those critical days and weeks following your procedure, you may be wondering about what is normal and when to worry about how your scar is healing.

Early Healing Concerns

In the first days and up to a week or two after your procedure, the type of symptoms impacting healing that the patient should watch out for are signs of infection or necrosis.

Infections caused by bacteria will usually present with redness that increases day by day, pain that becomes more uncomfortable, redness that spreads from the incision area and the area is warm to the touch.

Skin not having proper blood supply causing necrosis appears as a dark scab that can appear near the line of the incision. Necrosis is very serious.

Other issues of concern are fluid or blood collecting under surgical area.

Late Healing Concerns

To ensure proper healing and minimal scarring, patients should expect to keep a non-irritating tape for the first few weeks along incisions. The pressure of the tape helps the scars to stay flat. After the first few weeks, a silicone sheaths or paint-on silicone will need to be used to help the scar stay flat.

Issues of concern are when scars become thick, wide or discolored. Lighter skin tones create a lighter scars, darker skin tones usually have a darker pigment that fades over time. Scars become wide most likely because of tension on the area or lack of skin strength. This type of issue typically must be repaired surgically. Scars that become thick or raised often happen through healing too aggressively and can typically be treated with steroid injections.

Incisions and scars are usually completely healed in about a year.

What Can You do to Help Healing

It is critically important to follow any antibiotic regiment and incision care instructions provided by your surgeon. Be aware that your garments can actually impede your healing by impacting blood flow and you will need to wear the type of clothing recommended by your surgeon.

If you live in the Northern Virginia or Washington, DC area and are ready to reclaim your confidence, contact us to schedule a complimentary consultation at (703) 893-6168 or submit a form online to request an appointment.

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