Open heart surgery is an invasive procedure that can leave a lasting scar. While the scar may be unavoidable, proper care and attention can help to avoid hypertrophic scars and ensure optimal open-heart surgery scar healing.
A study published in the Journal of Cardiothoracic Surgery found that hypertrophic scars and keloids often arise after open heart operations. The research highlights that tension caused by stretch-induced forces may be linked to keloid formation –a common occurrence on high-tension sites located on the chest. Various treatment options for keloid management exist, such as surgery, steroid injections, radiotherapy, laser therapy, silicone gel sheeting, and pressure therapy.
With the right approach, you can minimize the appearance of a keloid scar made by surgical excision and reduce discomfort. This article will provide tips on caring for your open heart surgery scar to ensure it heals properly and looks its best.
1. Keep the Area Clean
Once your scar has healed, it’s important to maintain good hygiene by keeping the area clean. Use mild soap and warm water to gently wash the scar once or twice a day, and then pat it dry with a towel. Avoid scrubbing, picking at scabs, and using hot water, as this can disrupt healing and delay the process of scar maturation.
Be aware of the risk of infection and damage to blood vessels when caring for your surgery scar. Keep the area clean and dry. Avoid any activities that may cause trauma or irritation to the scar, such as heavy lifting or strenuous exercise. If you experience severe pain or discomfort while engaging in daily activities, contact your doctor immediately.
2. Protect from Sunlight
The sun’s UV rays can damage and darken your open heart surgery scar, which is why you should protect your skin with clothing that covers the area or use sunscreen whenever you go outside. Covering exposed areas of skin helps minimize exposure to harmful UV radiation, which can cause uneven pigmentation and delayed healing time.
3. Wear Loose-Fitting Clothing
It’s important to wear loose-fitting clothing on your scar. This will help to prevent friction between your skin and fabric which may cause additional irritation or discomfort. Try to stick with lightweight fabrics made from cotton or bamboo that won’t rub against the skin too much, as this will improve comfort levels during the recovery period significantly.
4. Massage Your Scar
Another way to help heal a surgery scar is by regularly massaging it when it’s no longer sore or tender. This helps soften up scar tissues while also improving elasticity across tissues which could help reduce overall stiffness in surrounding areas of skin. Massaging also increases circulation, which encourages cell regeneration for better wound healing results.
Using a specialized scar cream can help reduce the appearance of your scar and promote quicker recovery. Look for creams that contain ingredients like Vitamin E, aloe vera, and cocoa butter, which are known to help reduce inflammation and improve skin elasticity. Keep in mind to consult with your doctor to choose the best option for you. Applying these creams daily will help keep your scar moisturized and promote faster healing.
5. Treat With Silicone Gel Sheeting
Silicone gel pads are a great way to help reduce the appearance of surgical scars, especially those caused by invasive surgery. The silicone gel helps to keep the scar hydrated and protected from further damage. Gel pads can help reduce any discomfort as well as improve blood circulation in the area. This increased blood flow can help speed up healing and minimize any potential complications.
6. Consider Superficial Radiation Therapy
Superficial radiation therapy for keloids (SRT) is a scar treatment option that can help reduce the appearance of hypertrophic scars and keloid formation. This type of radiation therapy targets the incision sites of cardiac surgery, which helps reduce inflammation and promote healing. It also helps to minimize the risk of further scarring or discoloration in the area. SRT is a safe and effective way to improve the appearance of open heart surgery keloid scar while helping to reduce any discomfort associated with them.
7. Practice Healthy Lifestyle Habits
You should also practice healthy habits daily, like getting enough sleep (for at least 7-8 hours), eating proper nutrition consisting of whole foods (like fruits/veggies), and exercising purposely through regimented activity sessions — all three aspects combined will prove vitally beneficial for anyone desiring long term positive results when it comes down their ongoing recovery process post operation!
8. Don’t Be Afraid To Ask For Help
Consult with experienced medical professionals who can help you identify potential treatments that may speed up your recovery and minimize the visual changes after your invasive heart surgery.
How can I get rid of Keloid Chest Scars?
Keloid scars are a type of scar that can form after chest incisions, such as those made during invasive heart surgery. They are raised, red, or purple and can be itchy or painful. Fortunately, you can treat these scars with different procedures. At The Keloid Plastic Surgery Center, we offer keloid scar treatment after heart surgery Miami Beach to help you.
In some cases, an invasive approach may be necessary to remove keloid chest scars. Keloid removal with surgery Miami Beach eliminates the scar tissue without damaging healthy tissue. It is usually done under local anesthesia and can be combined with other treatments, such as steroid injections or SRT. After the procedure, keep the area clean and dry and use a moisturizer to help reduce itching and discomfort. Consider any underlying medical conditions that may affect the healing process in the chest region before undergoing surgery for keloids.
As was explained earlier, superficial radiotherapy works by targeting the scar tissue with radiation, which helps to reduce inflammation and promote healing. Laser therapy, on the other hand, targets the chest wall to improve its cosmetic appearance. Both treatments can help reduce the size and visibility of keloid scar after heart surgery, as well as minimize any discomfort associated with them.
Cryotherapy for keloids Miami Beach is a procedure in which cold temperatures are used to freeze the scar tissue, which helps to reduce inflammation and promote healing. Keloid intralesional steroid therapy Miami Beach can also be used to reduce the size of keloids and improve their appearance. Pressure therapy is another option that involves applying pressure to the area with a bandage or garment to flatten out the scar tissue.
All of these treatments can help improve the appearance of keloid scars after invasive heart surgery. However, you need to consult with a medical professional before undergoing any treatment for keloids to ensure safety and effectiveness.
Schedule an appointment for Keloid Treatment!
If you are looking for a way to reduce the appearance of post-heart surgery keloid scar, look no further! At The Keloid Plastic Center, we can discuss your options for therapy for keloids. With the right treatment plan, you can improve the appearance of your scars and get back to living without worrying about how they look. Don’t wait any longer – contact us today and start your journey towards an improved scar appearance!