Scar & Disfigurement

Scars

Scars are what remain after the skin has been wounded. Once the wound closes, new skin grows over the area. While the skin of a scar may be a different shade or texture than the undamaged skin around it, the several factors influence what a scar will ultimately look like. These include the type, location, size, and severity of the original injury, how the wound was treated, and genetic factors.

Scars occur whenever the skin is opened and wounded due to accidents or surgery. These can include motor vehicle accidents, animal attacks, and other accidents, among other causes.

Scars initially may look red or thick, but most fade and heal over a period of time. Some people are prone to hypertrophic scars, which result in a red and raised bump over the original scar site. Others develop keloids, which are overgrowths of collagen that can grow beyond the size of the original wound.

The look of a fully healed scar may be enhanced by surgical procedures, dermabrasion, or laser treatment, though a scar will never resemble the skin's appearance that was there before the wound occurred.

Disfigurement

Disfigurement is when a person has a scar, burn, or skin texture, or a differently shaped body part, that affects that person's appearance. It may also lead to emotional or psychological distress over the concern of looking different from others. This can include negative body image, depression, concern about the reaction from other people in response to the disfigurement, and other problems.

Accidents of all kinds, including motor vehicle accidents, heavy machinery accidents, animal attacks, amputation, burns, and more, can all cause a person to become disfigured. Assault and other acts of violence can also lead to disfigurement.

Plastic or reconstructive surgery may be able to help a person who wants to minimize the look of the disfigurement. In some cases, surgery may fix the issue altogether.

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