The biology of scarring

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Most everyone is acquainted with scars whether its on their own body or somebody else’s. On the other hand most people have no idea that scars are a living , changing biological process just like hair, nails, and even skin. Scarring is the process of healing that our bodies and all organs that we possess go through after any type of injury. This is true when we cut our skin or suffer a heart attack. Our bodies have evolved to handle so many specific jobs by so many different organs that the ability to regenerate our tissue has been lost. The regeneration process has been replaced by the scarring process whereby our organs (including skin) lay down collagen in an attempt to bridge the gap of tissue loss or death. The scar is living tissue that matures (or remodels) with time and assumes some of the characteristics of the original tissue. This takes time; such as skin scars that start out as red, raised, and hard; and over time become white, flat, and soft. This process can take as little as 6 months or as long as two years. Many factors play a role in maturation including location, age and nutrition. All scars should be allowed to mature over time before any consideration to revision is given.