What is Therapeutic Ultrasound for Scars?

What is Therapeutic Ultrasound for Scars?

Most people equate the word “ultrasound” with fetal imaging. Indeed, one of the most common applications of ultrasound technology is allowing a pregnant woman to see her unborn child, know its gender ahead of time, or learn other things about a pregnancy.

However, while ultrasound technology is probably most often used for fetal imaging, it can serve several other valuable applications as well—including, believe it or not, scar therapy.

A “therapeutic ultrasound” is a type of ultrasound that utilizes ultra-high sonic frequencies as an aid in the healing of wounds or other injuries. When an ultrasound probe covered in a gel is touched to a wounded area, the probe transfers high-frequency vibration into the tissues at that site. These vibrations can relax the local tissues and direct extra blood flow into the area, which can in turn help to relieve pain and speed up healing.

Why Therapeutic Ultrasounds Are Good for Scars

It is important to note that therapeutic ultrasound technology can have positive effects on many different kinds of injuries. Chronic back pain, muscle sprains or strains, pain in the tailbone, joint issues (including certain types of arthritis), and more. With injured or arthritic joints, the increased blood flow provided by a therapeutic ultrasound can actually assist in collagen reformation. The positive effects of therapeutic ultrasound, in other words, are versatile and far-reaching.

In scar therapy, a therapeutic ultrasound might be used for the purpose of scar tissue breakdown. Previously injured tissue can lose its elasticity as scar tissue grows back in its place—a phenomenon that isn’t only limited to skin, but which also occurs in muscles, tendons, and other body tissues. This more hardened tissue can be a significant problem depending on the location of the scar on the body. Since scar tissue is less elastic than the intact skin, it can impair range of motion and overall function in parts of the body that tend to move or flex on a regular basis. Scars on the hands, at joints, or on the face are examples.

Therapeutic ultrasound can help “break down” the fibrous, collagen-rich tissue that forms at the site of scars. The fast vibrations of the ultrasound probe can contribute to making scar tissue more elastic, which in turn can restore range of motion and reduce scar pain or irritation.

Similarity to Scar Desensitization

The effects of this type of therapy, then, are similar to the benefits of scar desensitization—which involves rubbing or tapping scars as they heal to eliminate sensory nerve fibers and ensure more evenly distributed and pliable scar tissue. The main difference in these two forms of scar therapy is that one (scar desensitization) is only efficient during the scar healing process while the other (therapeutic ultrasound) can be effective both during healing and after scar tissue has formed and hardened.

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Can You Get Rid of an Indented Scar?

Can You Get Rid of an Indented Scar?

Although scarring is a natural and necessary phase of healing, this process sometimes leaves indentations, puckering, or pockmarking where the tissue below the skin has been damaged or lost. These are called atrophic scars, most commonly caused by acne, injury, and surgery. Although some level of scarring may be permanent, there are safe topical treatments available to help restore this underlying tissue and smooth the surface of the skin to reduce the appearance of scars. These treatments include a blend of vitamins and nutrients that have demonstrated a significant clinical benefit to skin healing and scar reduction.

Scars and Skin Form Differently

Scar tissue is built from the same collagen protein as normal skin, but the fibers are arranged differently. Where natural skin is a somewhat randomly assorted matrix, which allows sweat glands and hair follicles to form, scar tissue fibers are arranged in strong, though less flexible, parallel layers that do not allow for sweat glands or hair follicles.

When skin is damaged by injury, surgery, or acne, the skin layers are forcibly separated. Once the interference is removed or resolved, the skin immediately begins to generate new cells, adding fibers of collagen in roughly diagonal rows. Many factors affect the speed of this process, as well as what kind of scar eventually forms.

Minimizing Scars as they Heal

While the scar is forming, the layers of skin that come together may not align properly if the wound moves too much, or the skin becomes too dry or too damp. Therefore, during the healing process, it is important to both immobilize the area to maintain proper alignment, and to ensure that the skin along the edges does not dry out or become too moist.

Using a properly formulated scar treatment, such as InviCible Scars, as directed during the healing process helps to maintain proper elasticity while also feeding the skin vitamins and nutrients that are essential for healing.

InviCible Advanced Scar Therapy includes vitamin C, licorice, and aloe vera to completely heal the area, and restore elasticity and skin tone, as well as silicone and essential fatty acids to reduce skin pocking and indentation.

For years, vitamin E was used topically as well, but this has recently been discouraged by dermatology experts as it can cause skin irritation. Other ingredients to avoid include hydroquinone, Kojic acid, and anything with fragrance or preservatives.

Reducing Scars after Healing

Skin and scar tissue continually regenerates and replaces cell layers throughout our lives. Though this process is more gradual than the initial healing, it does mean that the appearance of scars can be altered even after they have fully formed. If given the proper tools, the body will continue to heal and repair old scars.

InviCible Advanced Scar Therapy comes highly recommended by doctors who treat skin disease, such as acne, or perform surgery. Regular application of our nutrient-rich product helps to drive the healing process and reduces the appearance of scars and uneven skin tone.

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Which is Better for Scars: Silicone Creams or Silicone Sheets?

Which is Better for Scars: Silicone Creams or Silicone Sheets?

There are endless treatments for scars – lotions and gels, ointments and injections. They’re stuffed into pharmacy aisles and online inventories alike, promising fast results and easy healing. However, two of these treatments manage to keep those promises.

Silicone creams and silicone sheets counter the effects of scarring. They both relieve inflammation while also decreasing rigidity and improving elasticity. They also both deliver concentrated polymers to the skin, improving its appearance, texture, and collagen responses. This makes them ideal for treatment – but which is best?

What is Silicone’s Effect on Scars?

Silicone proves essential in the healing process. It infuses the skin with key amines (organic nitrogen-based compounds) to maintain proper hydration and oxygenation levels. It also interrupts the body’s excessive collagen composition, stabilizing levels to reduce the build-up of tissue. This ensures that scars heal quickly and minimizes their overall appearance.

Read More: Scar Healing

What is Silicone Cream?

Silicone cream, as its name suggests, is a spreadable topical formulation fortified with silicone. It allows for direct skin contact, with individuals applying it to their scar sites. This introduces amines into the body and expedites healing.

Read More: Silicone Creams

What is a Silicone Sheet?

A silicone sheet is an adhesive product. It’s a two-sided design similar to a bandage that combines a latex shell with silicone gel padding. This padding rests against the scar and delivers steady nutrients throughout the day. It’s typically reusable.

Read More: Silicone Sheets

Which is Best: Silicone Creams or Silicone Sheets

The effectiveness of silicone creams and sheets are undeniable. Both products, according to studies conducted by Dr. Thomas A. Mustoe, a member of the Feinberg School of Medicine, promote accelerated healing within the body and reduce the effects of scarring. They’re useful against keloids, hypertrophic scars, contractures, and more. However, one does offer distinct advantages over the other.

Silicone creams are more efficient for daily use. Their lightweight formulas absorb directly into the skin, rather than requiring adhesives (which can roll, twist, or come undone.) Cream is easily used with other topical options such as sun block, make-up, moisturizers, or cleansers, and they’re undetectable. It’s also easily applied to facial areas, where sheets often prove cumbersome. These benefits make them ideal for the treatment of new and old scars alike.

Read More: New and Old Scars

Consult With a Physician

Silicone creams offer the same advantages as silicone sheets, but are much easier to use. Some individuals, however, may require more extensive procedures to treat their scars – such as dermabrasion, micro-needling, chemical peels, facial revisions, and more. Be sure to consult with a physician if you have a very complex scar.

Read More: Scar Treatments

Silicone scar products are the gold standard in scar therapy. This makes them perfect for treating inflammation, rigidity, and more.

Have a question about silicone creams, sheets, or other options? Leave us a comment! We’ll be happy to provide more information. Subscribe to Scars and Spots to get our posts delivered to your inbox.

Gallbladder Scars and Pregnancy

Gallbladder Scars and Pregnancy

Each year an estimated 700,000 individuals in the United States have their gallbladders removed. The surgery ranks among the most common and the most effective, with leaps in laparoscopic techniques ensuring accelerated recovery times. However, despite advances in technology used in gallbladder surgery, scars are still left behind once the process is completed – and many women wonder how pregnancy will affect these scars. It’s an understandable concern, and understanding a few factors can better prepare women for what to expect.

What is Gallbladder Surgery?

Gallbladder surgery (known also as a cholecystectomy) is the removal of the gallbladder, a digestive organ located near the pancreas and liver. This is achieved through a series of careful incisions, with doctors entering through the abdominal cavity and extracting the gallbladder’s fundus, body, and neck. It’s usually done to alleviate pain associated with pancreatitis, bile duct blockage, or pigment stones.  This surgery is considered low-risk, and complications are rare. Patients typically return home within one or two days, and normal activity can often resume within a week.

Read More: Gallbladder Surgery Scars

What Kind of Scarring Results From Gallbladder Surgery?

Most gallbladder surgeries these days are performed laparoscopically using a small camera and thin instruments inserted through small “keyhole” incisions which small scars.

What is Pregnancy’s Impact on Gallbladder Scars?

Pregnancy transforms every body – increasing hormone production, causing tissue swelling, and creating sudden skin discoloration. Women find themselves experiencing an endless array of changes. Changes in the appearance of abdominal scars, including those from gallbladder surgery, are expected, and may include:

Stretching

During pregnancy skin (especially along the abdomen) will expand to accommodate the fetus and its needs. Gallbladder scars will do the same, stretching to keep pace with the stomach. Their appearance will, typically, become elongated and thinner.

Tightening

Some women may experience a pinching sensation while pregnant. Gallbladder scars are often expanded to their limits, resulting in mild or intermediate skin tightness.

Itching

A common pregnancy symptom is itching. Due to a hormonal imbalance, crucial moisture can be lost in the skin. Gallbladder scars are no exception, and will often begin to itch as the trimesters progress. Redness and flaking can also occur.

Note that every case is unique and not all women will experience these changes.

How Long Do the Effects of Pregnancy Last?

After pregnancy, most women will see their gallbladder scars return to a normal state. Their size will decrease and their textures will soften. However, some women have reported cases of symptoms lingering past childbirth including tightening sensations and irritation. Should this occur, it’s recommend to consult with a doctor. He will be able to provide insights into moisturizing creams, vitamin regimens, and other helpful techniques.

Read More: How To Get Rid Of Scars

Pregnancy promises many changes. Gallbladder scars, however, rank among the most temporary and should cause no concerns.

Have a question about your scar? Leave a comment and we’ll be happy to answer.

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How to Treat and Fade Appendectomy Scars

How to Treat and Fade Appendectomy Scars

Records of the first appendectomy date back to 1735, with French surgeon Claudius Amyand removing perforated tissue from an 11-year-old boy. Since then the procedure has become one of the most common in the world, with approximately 270,000 performed each year in the United States alone.

What is an Appendectomy?

An appendectomy is the removal of the appendix, usually because of appendicitis. The appendix is a vestigial organ which means that the body doesn’t really need it anymore. It is part of the large intestine.

Appendicitis occurs when the appendix becomes inflamed, usually because of a blockage. Appendicitis can cause intense pain and high fevers.

An “open appendectomy” involves a single short incision in the abdominal wall. A “laparoscopic appendectomy” involves several smaller, less obvious incisions. The base of the appendix is tied off where it joins the colon allowing its safe removal.

Does Scarring Occur After an Appendectomy?

Though considered minimally invasive, an appendectomy will still leave scars. These are typically shallow marks along the stomach or across the hip, and they are usually no more than 2-inches to 3-inches long.

Read More: Surgery Scars

Which Treatment Options are Available?

Appendectomy scars will fade naturally over time with most people – if treated properly (sun protection, proper wound healing, etc.) However, some patients may want to expedite this process. Others may develop quite prominent scars which they feel self-conscious about.

Help the Incision Heal Properly

Infection can cause healing problems and scarring. One of the most important things to do after surgery is to care for the incision properly. Keep it clean, applying both a bandage and antibiotic ointment to minimize infection. Be certain to dry the site after bathing, avoid sun exposure, and maintain a healthy diet (foods rich in protein and antioxidants will strengthen the healing process.)

Topical Scar Creams

Scarring occurs when the body creates excess collagen, which changes the texture and appearance of the tissue. If your body over produces melanin, then your scar will be dark (hyperpigmentation) or if it is under-produced, your scar will be void of color/white (hypopigmentation.) Topical treatments can help improve you scar’s appearance and feel. When applying your scar treatment, be sure to firmly massage the scar. This will help to soften the scar tissue and flatten it (unless it is a keloid or hypertrophic scar.)

Have a question about your appendectomy scar? Leave us a comment!

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