Keloid scars are the worst type of acne scar (though acne is not the only cause of this type of scarring). In this article, we will reveal exactly what keloid scars are, what types of acne can cause them, and what the best treatments are for this scar.
What is a Keloid Acne Scar?
A keloid scar is a scar that, unlike regular scars, grows or worsens over time. These scars are often sensitive to the touch and may cause pain or a tingling sensation. These scars are raised and often large; acne scars are typically depressed or lumpy.
Keloid Scar Causes
As mentioned previously, keloid scars can occur from things other than acne. In fact, the most common cause of a keloid scar is major tissue injury from the result of injury or surgery.
When caused by acne, these scars are exclusively caused by the most severe forms of cystic nodular acne. Even the worst cystic acne does not typically cause keloid scarring (though it does cause acne scars).
The exact cause of keloid scarring is still yet to be determined. It seems to stem from the result of an abnormal or altered healing process. Keeping wounds stitched and covered seems to lessen the incidence of these scars occurring. It is likely that the incidence of these scars is the result of abnormal immune activity. Somehow the immune system is triggered and interferes with the healing process, causing the formation of the keloid scar. We know that it is at least somewhat modulated by the immune system as immunotherapy (interferon therapy to be exact) has had modest success in treating existing keloid scars.
Keloid Acne Scar Treatments
Keloid scarring is unlike other forms of scars as they have proven difficult to treat. The only over the counter treatment that has been proven effective in treating keloid scars is silicone gel. However, even silicone does not make keloid scars go away. Instead, it only seems to be capable of halting the growth of keloid scars and reducing the pain associated with keloid scars.
Removing keloid scars surgically has proven ineffective. Most scars seem to return within a year’s time, whereas in about 50% of cases the resulting scarring is worse than the original scar was that was removed. As mentioned earlier, interferon therapy has proven to be effective in treating these scars, but interferon has horrific side effects. While interferon works well is often reserved for debilitating, life-threatening diseases like hepatitis C and some forms of cancer. It is only used in the most extreme cases of keloid scarring; you would much rather have a painful scar or two than deal with the side effects of interferon therapy.