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Steroid Injections for Raised Scars: What You Need to Know

Posted April 2018 by Biodermis
Steroid injections for raised and bumpy scars are a common form of treatment provided by most dermatologists. Keloid and hypertrophic scar formations are good candidates for steroid injections. Other skin conditions and lesions can be treated in the same way. It’s important to know that while steroid injections can help reduce the appearance of abnormal scars, they are not the only treatment option.

If you’re considering steroid injections for your scars, continue reading before making a decision. If you’re terrified of needles, scroll to the end to learn about a safe and effective topical solution for scar management—no pointy things involved!

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What are steroid injections?

The medical name for the type of steroid used in intralesional (scar tissue) injections is called triamcinolone. Triamcinolone—a class of corticosteroid—is also contained in many gels and creams prescribed for a variety of skin conditions. In nature, corticosteroids are found as biologically-occurring hormones produced in the adrenal cortex of mammals and other vertebrates. Corticosteroids produced in the adrenal cortex are responsible for numerous psychological functions involved in stress response, immune system processes, inflammation, and much more. To say the least, these microscopic hormones found in our bodies keep us healthy in a variety of ways.

It’s clear that corticosteroids play an important role in the human body, but what about the synthetic version used in steroid injections? Without being too technical, triamcinolone (medical steroid) is an artificial compound that closely mimics the chemistry of naturally-occurring corticosteroids. In essence, corticosteroids produced in the lab aid in the body’s natural repair response, if used according to a doctor’s prescription.

Dermatologists administer corticosteroid injections directly into a hypertrophic or keloid scar. Corticosteroids can also be injected into a wound site to prevent the formation of these scars. It is understood that synthetic steroids decrease the inflammation response involved in scar tissue growth and skin repair by slowing excess collagen production. This has the effect of softening and flattening scars, helping them blend in with the surrounding tissue.

The side-effects of corticosteroid injections

Since the 1960s, steroid injections for keloid and hypertrophic scar formations have gained much popularity. The wide-spread use of this treatment by dermatologists, backed by years of clinical studies, is a testament to the effectiveness of intralesional injections. Most patients do see improvements in the appearance of their scar in only a few treatment sessions with their dermatologists. But it’s important to know that while the success rate of corticosteroid injections is high, there are a number of possible side-effects.

Patients may endure either immediate or delayed reactions after receiving intralesional steroid injections. Because scars and other skin lesions are sensitive areas, patients run the risk of bleeding, enduring mild to severe pain, bruising, and infection shortly after injection. Some patients experience contact dermatitis from treatments, also known as eczema--an itchy, scaly rash on the skin.

Delayed reactions from steroid injections can occur days, weeks, or months after the initial treatment. These delayed reactions include white or brown marks on the skin, increased hair growth at the treatment site, and steroid-induced acne. A cutaneous condition known as lipoatrophy, or localized fat tissue loss, can leave small dents in the patient’s skin after injection. While most of these delayed side-effects are temporary, they can be a nuisance.

Because keloid and hypertrophic scars often require multiple steroid injections over a period of weeks or months, there is increased risk for both immediate and delayed reactions. Luckily, there are topical solutions for scar therapy that don’t involve needles or an array of unwanted side-effects.

A safe alternative for scar treatment

Silicone gel technology has been on the market for over 30 years and numerous clinical studies support its effectiveness in reducing the appearance of keloid and hypertrophic scars. As with corticosteroid injections, excessive collagen production can be managed topically with medical silicone. This helps to flatten scars and reduce their appearance by controlling moisture and oxygen retention at the scar site. Silicone gel technology presents a hypoallergenic alternative to scar therapy safe for all skin types. But with so many products on the internet, making a decision can be difficult.

How does silicone help heal scars?

Biodermis has been the leader in topical medical-grade silicone for nearly three decades, faithfully serving dermatologists and plastic surgeons around the world. With highly regarded products like Epi-derm Silicone Gel Sheets and Pro-Sil Silicone Scar Sticks, choosing the right scar therapy option for your scars is seamless. And the best part: no needles!

Visit biodermis.com today to learn more about silicone scar technology and to explore a variety of unique products.
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Xeragel Silicone Ointment 10g Tube Xeragel Silicone Ointment 10g Tube

Xeragel is practical, convenient 100% silicone for scars. It is highly recommended for use on exposed (not under clothing) scars.

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Pro-Sil 4.25g Pro-Sil 4.25g

The world's first and ONLY PATENTED silicone scar treatment stick!
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Epi-derm Standard Sheet Epi-derm Standard Sheet

Epi-Derm Standard Sheets are available in Clear or Natural

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