Burn Scars

Burn scars are the result of an accident from a fire or hot surface. In appearance, they can be:

  • Depressed, raised, shiny, smooth or rough.
  • Darker than the natural skin pigmentation or completely void of color.
  • Different colors as they heal, with reddish or bluish pigmentation.
  • Thicker and tougher in texture than normal skin.

Why treat burn scars

Scars can create emotional, social and economic complications.

What you need to know

Patients should undergo a burn scar procedure as soon as possible, as recent evidence shows treating scars is more effective when done earlier.

Do's and Don'ts

A few simple steps should be taken to help avoid scarring from minor burns. For more serious burns, consult a doctor.

Do...
  • Cleanse the burn gently, but thoroughly.
  • Keep the burn covered for the first few days to help keep it moist and clean.
  • Use an antibiotic cream to prevent infection.
Don't...
  • Pick at scabs.

Burn scar questions to ask a dermatologic surgeon

Burn Scars Questionaire

  1. Which burn scar procedure is the correct one for me? (What are the options?)
  2. What is the estimated cost of the procedure?
  3. How long is one appointment?
  4. How often will I need to receive treatment to remove my burn scars?
  5. How far apart are the treatments?
  6. What are the common side effects or complications associated with the procedure?
  7. How can I prepare for the treatment/procedure?
  8. Does burn scar removal hurt?
  9. What are my pain management and anesthesia options?
  10. How long is the recovery time associated with my procedure?
  11. Do you have before-and-after patient images to help to prepare me for what to expect?
  12. Will someone walk me through the process before going in for treatment?
  13. What are the risks?
  14. What should I expect after the procedure is performed? (i.e., short-term and long-term effects; activity restrictions; expected recovery period)

General questions to ask before burn scar procedures

  1. Is a doctor on site?
  2. Is the doctor board-certified in dermatology or in another specialty with equivalent training and experience?
  3. Was my medical history taken?
  4. Was I given an initial evaluation to determine if the technique or procedure is appropriate for my skin type?
  5. Did the doctor show me before-and-after photos?