Post-operative Scar Management

Post-operative Scar Management

Avenue Plastic Surgery have developed a comprehensive scar management programme, which includes immediate and long term care to ensure scarring from your operation is minimised.

The object of our plastic surgeons is to make your post-operative scar as inconspicuous as possible. This is done by hiding the scar in areas it cannot be noticed, and by meticulous suture technique.

We also have a dressings nurse dedicated to your post-operative care. Our dressing nurses work closely with our surgeons to provide wound care for optimal recovery and aesthetic outcomes. For scar minimisation, it is very important that all patients follow the post-operative recommendations given by the surgeon and dressing nurses.

Factors that impact scarring

Whenever the skin sustains damage, such as that which occurs during surgery, there is the possibility of scarring. Some factors will affect the process of wound healing, that are outside your surgeons control, such as;

  • Age
    As we age, our skin becomes less elastic and becomes thinner.  This is due to the breakdown of collagen and elastin, and the thinning of the fat layer under the skin.
  • Skin tone and complexion
    Some skin colouration are more likely to scar than others. Those with specific skin tones are more likely to experience post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation, hypertrophic and keloid scars.
  • Size and depth of your incision
    A large incision is much more likely to leave a scar than a small incision. The deeper and longer the incision, the more likely there will be scarring. A larger incision may also be exposed to more stress as the body moves, which can cause slower healing.
  • How quickly your skin heals
    Genetics, existing medical conditions and medications can all impact the healing process.
  • Lifestyle factors
    Exposure to the sun, smoking, pollution and dietary intake can impact the healing capabilities of the skin.

Our scar management programme
Several immediate strategies can be undertaken to minimize the prominence of scars, including:

  • Applying pressure/tape
    Applying pressure on a wound is known to flatten it and prevent it becoming raised. Pressure can be applied by taping the wound. Taping protect and supports the wound while also applying a small amount of pressure to the wound continuously.

Please keep the micropore tape in place until it begins to fall off (7-10 days) and then replace the micropore tape. You may shower from day 3 post surgery but should leave the micropore tape intact. After showering, pat the tape dry or use the cool setting on a hairdryer to dry the tape.
Continue to tape your scars for 12 weeks, replacing the microtape only when necessary (every 7-10 days). After the first 12 weeks, you may continue using the micropore tape for a further 12 weeks or until you are completely happy with your surgical scar.

  • Healite II LED Light Therapy
    LED (Light Emitting Diode) Light Therapy is a gentle treatment that uses two clinically proven wavelengths (red: 633 nm and near infra-red: 830nm) of light to enhance cellular function. The treatment offers many benefits, such as;
  • Assists with post-surgery wound healing
  • Reduces pain, bruising, redness and swelling
  • Offers prophylaxis against hypertrophic scar formation
  • Achieves scar modification in young scars
  • Reduces fine wrinkles and improves photodamaged skin
  • Enhances skin tone and texture
  • Improves post inflammatory hyperpigmentation (skin darkening)
  • Improves dermatitis/eczema and psoriasis

We offer 3 x complimentary Healite II LED Light Therapy treatments at Avenue Advanced Skin Care as part of our post-operative care. Your dressing nurse will assist you with ensuring your bookings are strategically spaced apart, and may recommend further treatments to best results.

  • Silicone gel
    For problematic scars, you may apply Stratderm, once a day for 12 weeks. Strataderm is a rapidly drying, non-sticky, transparent silicone gel formulation for the treatment of both old and new scars. It relieves the itching and discomfort associated with scars, reduces redness and discoloration, and prevents abnormal and excessive scar formation.
  • Massage with Environ vitamin A,C & E oil
    Massaging the scar is most effective when it is done often, for long periods of time, and with firmness. The wound can be massaged after sutures are removed and the tenderness is settling down. We recommend massaging the scar twice a day with Environ oil for 12-18 months. The Environ oil contains vitamins A, C and E & other antioxidants & essential fatty acids – and is clinically proven to assist with the healing of surgical scars, stretch marks, dry/flaking skin and pigmentation concerns. It also offers anti-ageing benefits.

Long term scar solutions
Long term scar solutions are available at Avenue Advanced Skin Care, which may include;

  • Steroid injections
    If you are prone to forming keloid scars, talk to your surgeon about having a steroid injection with our Nurse Injector to prevent or treat the formation of keloid scarring.
  • Infini micro-needling with radio frequency
    Infini treatments combine both radio frequency and micro needling technology to treat the skin. Skin needling/micro needling and radio frequency are both well-established treatments that are normally performed individually to stimulate new collagen to improve the skin. Therefore the effects of Infini are two-fold; collagen production is induced both by the mechanical effects of micro-needling, and the radio frequency energy delivered through the tips of the needles. The treatment has been clinically proven to increase collagen production in the skin as part of the natural healing process that follows.
  • Dermapen skin needling
    Skin Needling (also known as Collagen Induction Therapy – CIT) is a treatment designed to improve skin texture, soften scars and stretch marks. Skin Needling is a minimally invasive treatment that uses tiny needles to create micro-injuries to the skin. These micro-injuries induce a natural wound healing response of the skin, which creates a release of growth factors to the area for the remodelling of new collagen and elastin.
  • Laser treatments
    Laser treatments may be performed by a Dermal Clinician to help treat post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (darkening of the skin near around the scar), redness (vascular changes to the skin surrounding the scar), or for collagen remodelling to raised scars.