A keloid is a type of raised scar tissue that sometimes develops during the wound healing process, often growing much larger and more conspicuous than the wound itself. Keloids can be unsightly, especially when they appear on your face or other areas of exposed skin. While they can arise anywhere that skin has been wounded, keloids most commonly appear on the chest, back, shoulders and earlobes.
Like any scar that results from a wound, you will not be able to completely erase your keloid, but you can treat it to diminish its size and make it less noticeable. Cryotherapy for keloids is an evidence-based treatment method that can help you shrink and fade your keloid scar.
How do Keloids Develop?
For the most part, keloids form as scar tissue after the superficial layers of skin have been damaged. However, there are extremely rare cases where a keloid may appear spontaneously, without a preceding injury. Keloids develop and grow over time, sometimes reaching their full size months after the initial injury.
Keloids result from the proliferation of fibrous collagen that grows beyond the wound’s original boundaries. Rather than stopping at the point where the wound is sufficiently protected, collagen formation runs amok, continuing to amass until it forms a smooth, hard raised scar.
Injuries that can cause keloids include:
- Severe acne
- Chicken pox
- Surgical incisions
- Ear piercings
- Body piercings
Early care and treatment immediately after the wound occurs may reduce the degree of keloid scarring.
Who is at Risk for Keloids?
According to the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD), people of any age, gender or ethnicity may suffer from keloids, but certain populations are more prone to develop a keloid as their wound heals.
- African Americans, Hispanic Americans and ethnic Chinese are at higher risk than caucasians.
- People whose close family members have keloids are more likely to develop a keloid after a wound.
- Keloids appear most frequently in dark-skinned younger people in their late teens through early 30s.
- Keloids are less likely to develop in young children and older adults.
How To Get Rid of Your Keloid Scar
Attempting to surgically remove a keloid is not recommended, as it can result in an even worse keloid scar. Corticosteroid injections are often used to treat keloids, and in 50 to 80 percent of cases, the keloids will shrink. However, most of them grow back within five years.
Localized cryotherapy is a non-invasive treatment option that freezes keloid tissue while preserving the underlying skin. Cryotherapy has been shown to be successful in permanently shrinking smaller keloids and reducing their hardness. Patients see the most success with three or more cryotherapy sessions. For an older scar, keloid freezing may take multiple sessions to achieve the desired level of invisibility.
Cryotherapy treatment in the early phases of wound healing may help to arrest the buildup of collagen, to minimize the size and appearance of the resulting scar over time.
Cryotherapy for Keloids: What to Expect
Localized cryotherapy is a totally non-invasive procedure that can be performed in an outpatient setting. The procedure takes only several minutes and is not painful, although it may be mildly uncomfortable.
During the procedure, a wand is used to stream freezing cold nitrogen gas directly at your keloid scar. The keloid freezing process causes the superficial scar tissue to shrink, and scar tissue may eventually fall off after several sessions. A small dark scar may remain, and will likely fade over time.
It is important to note that results vary from one patient to the next, and there are no guarantees that your keloid will completely shrink to your satisfaction.
Localized Cryotherapy for Keloids in NYC
If you have an unsightly keloid that makes you self-conscious and undermines your confidence, localized cryotherapy is a safe, effective and inexpensive treatment option with a good track record of success. You can get localized cryotherapy for keloids without a prescription at InVita Wellness on Broadway.
You don’t have to live with unsightly and embarrassing keloids. Contact InVita Wellness NYC today for a consultation, and to set up your first cryotherapy for keloids session.
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Limandjaja, Grace C., et al. “The keloid disorder: heterogeneity, histopathology, mechanisms and models.” Frontiers in cell and developmental biology 8 (2020): 360.
Mowafy, Z., et al. “Effect of cryotherapy on hypertrophic scar.” European Journal of Molecular & Clinical Medicine 8.3 (2021): 1184-1191.