post operative scar management patient information

Mr Frank Lin Plastic Surgeon
Scars are an inevitable part of any surgery. Good scar
management is an important part of achieving the best
possible result after surgery.
Immature scars
generally appear
thicker, wider and
During the early stages of wound healing, the body
naturally lays down collagen, forming immature scar
tissue. Early scars are often thicker, raised and may be
discoloured. This scar then undergoes a natural
process of maturation called “remodeling”, which can
continue for up to 12 months or more.
Over time, with good
scar management,
they will often soften,
become narrower and
To encourage scars to mature favourably, and prevent
the formation of thick, unsightly scars, we recommend
several simple steps that can be commenced once the
wound has completely healed (usually within 1-2
weeks after surgery).
Massaging the scar for several minutes helps to reduce
swelling and promotes scar maturation. As scars lack
the normal glands that help to prevent the skin from
drying out, a natural moisturizer is recommended in
conjunction with scar massage.
The can commence as soon as the wound is fully
healed. Ideally, repeat this twice a day for the first three
months to gain the maximum benefit.
Scars also tend to react and tan differently when
exposed to sunlight. They are more sensitive and may
become sunburned more easily. Avoiding prolonged
sun exposure and using a moisturizer containing
sunscreen will help to protect and camouflage the
Following scar moisturizing and massaging, a
compression layer over the scar further promotes scar
maturation. This can be achieved with tapes (such as
Micropore™) or a silicon based product.
The use of silicon has been shown to independently
promote scar maturation and is often superior to
taping alone. Silicon is available in different
preparations, most commonly in the form of silicon
tape or silicon gel (such as Strataderm®). Modern
silicon preparations are not only effective but are easily
concealable. Sunscreen and makeup can usually be
applied over silicon gel.
Silicon therapy is recommended for all patients,
particularly those with an previous history of poor
scarring or Asian patients, for whom the risk of thick (or
keloid) scarring is much higher.
Despite these measures poor scarring can still occur. This may be due to a number of reasons including your
individual skin characteristics, location on the body and importantly, genetic factors. In most cases, poor scarring can
be treated and many specialized modalities are available. If you have any concerns or questions regarding your scar
please feel free to arrange a consultation with Mr Lin.
Mr. Frank Lin, FRACS
Plastic Reconstructive Aesthetic Surgeon
Tel: 9890 2800 Fax: 9890 3800 中文专线 : 9899 2266
This information is provided as a guide only. Copyright Dr. Frank Lin 2011-2014