How to Get Rid of Keloid Scars

Keloids are basically scars that occur as thick, raised overgrowths on the skin.

However, unlike the usual scars, these pink, purple, or flesh colored keloid scars with a smooth surface do not subside over time. At most, they can become smaller and flatter over a period of time.

The condition is not harmful, though, as these fibrous skin tumors are benign and non-cancerous. So, these had and rubbery lumps are not painful but they can be tender and itchy.

They usually develop as a result of abnormal wound healing after skin damage and injuries like piercings, cuts, burns, chicken pox, insect bites, acne, and other skin abrasions.

This happens due to excessive collagen production. The skin requires collagen fibers for healing wounds. Collagen is a type of protein that makes up the dermal structure. Wounds that get infected or are under tension while healing are more likely to leave keloid scars.

It is believed that dark skinned individuals are more prone to this problem. Plus, the tendency to develop keloids can also run in families. Keloid scars usually develop between ages 10 to 30.

How to Get Rid of Keloids

Keloid scars are generally resistant to treatments. Thus, they cannot be cured completely. Nonetheless, here are 8 treatments and suggestions that can help heal the scars to some extent.

  1. Baking Soda
  2. Aspirin Paste
  3. Coconut Oil
  4. Tea Tree Oil
  5. Aloe Vera
  6. Onion Extract
  7. Steroid Injections
  8. Cosmetic Treatments
  • Mix equal parts of baking soda and 3% hydrogen peroxide. Apply the resultant thick paste on the affected area three to four times in a day to shrink keloid scars. This mixture is likely to dry out the area. Hence, you can apply olive oil or jojoba oil afterwards.
  • Take three to four uncoated aspirin tablets, crush them with the back of a spoon and add a few drops of water in it to form a paste. Apply a thick coat of this paste on your keloid scar and leave it for about 15-30 minutes (until it dries) before washing it off. Follow up with the application of tea tree oil.
  • Massage a keloid with a mixture of 10 teaspoons of extra virgin coconut oil, and half a teaspoon each of lavender essential oil and calendula essential oil. Leave it on your skin for 15-20 minutes before rinsing it off with cool water. You can try a combination of sesame oil, lavender oil, and rosehip oil, too. Moreover, you may apply a calendula cream two times in a day.
  • Tea tree essential oil is considered good for getting rid of keloids and hypertrophic scars. In fact, it can even inhibit the growth of keloids and provide relief from itching and inflammation. So, you can apply tea tree oil or a mix of tea tree oil and vitamin E oil on your keloids. In case you do not want to put the oil directly on your skin, you may add it in a hot salt water solution. To prepare the solution, add half a teaspoon of sea salt and a few drops of tea tree oil in cup of warm distilled water. Soak the affected area in it for about 5-15 minutes. Follow this treatment two times in a day for almost two weeks.
  • Regularly applying pure aloe vera gel on the affected area at least twice daily can shrink and fade keloid scars naturally over a period of time. In addition, you can use a combination of one tablespoon of cocoa butter, two teaspoons of aloe vera gel, and one teaspoon of vitamin E oil. Leave it on your skin for about half an hour.
  • Onion extract is often included in skin care products because it helps prevent and heal scars due to its antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, and collagen-suppressive properties. Hence, you can either get onion extract in gel form or extract onion juice yourself and apply it on the affected area. To get onion juice, you need to dice a white onion and extract its juice through fine sieve or cheesecloth. You can combine this juice with vitamin E oil as well.
  • Steroid injections can help flatten keloid scars, especially when taken in the early stages of the development of the scars. Besides, steroid-impregnated tapes can also be applied.
  • If all else fails, you can consider cosmetic treatments like cryosurgical (freezing with liquid nitrogen), surgical excision, laser therapy, or radiation therapy to get rid of keloids. Before opting for any of these treatments, though, make sure you go through their pros and cons thoroughly. At times, when these lumpy scars are cut, they can come back and may eventually grow beyond the size of the previous scar.

Tips to Prevent Keloids

  • With keloids, prevention is definitely better than cure. As these scars develop after skin traumas, avoid going for tattoos and body piercings, especially on areas like the shoulders, back, chest, ear lobes, etc. because they tend to be under tension. Cosmetic surgeries, too, are best avoided.
  • Diminish the formation of keloid scars by going for compression therapy. It involves long-term compression of a keloid scar with the help of a pressure bandage or a silicone gel sheet. For ear piercings, pressure earring called Zimmer splints can be used.
  • You can also apply Imiquimod cream (5%) on the affected area after a surgical procedure or surgical removal of a keloid to prevent the formation of keloid scars. It is most effective on ear lobes as it is a low-tension area. Imiquimod, however, may cause skin irritation and hyperpigmentation in some people.

Dos and Don’ts

Dos

Don’ts

tickDo start keloid treatment as soon as possible because early keloid scars can be healed and minimized before they go on to become resistant to treatment. crossDo not expose keloids directly to the sun as they are likely to become darker than the skin around them due to tanning. Thus, make sure you use a sunscreen.
tickIf you are prone to keloids and dealing with severe acne, then do consult a dermatologist for proper treatment. crossDo not pick on the keloid scars.

10 Comments

  1. Pat Wilson

    September 19, 2013 at 7:22 pm

    How successful is cryosurgery?
    I have keloids in the middle of my chest. I understand that keloids can contribute to hypertension.
    Thanks

  2. beverly

    November 20, 2013 at 1:52 pm

    Plz wat can I use to darken my keloid scar! I am black and I treated my keloid scar using nitrogen liquid and it went down eventually! Buh the problem am having is that the scar area is pink and reddish and hav refused to blend with d color of my skin since am black in complexion! Please what can I do or use to make the scar area dark and blend bak with me skin! I don’t mind even its darker than my skin cause its really embarrassing on my chest region! Tnx! Beverly from Nigeria.

  3. Cool

    April 4, 2014 at 5:58 am

    My mother is aged around 50 years.She has a keloid on face.She has undergone all the treatment.(even steroid ,compression pad,ayurvedic and even surgery!!)But all in vain.Its getting bigger now a days.She has small keloid on chest and near stomach but they have almost been compressed.but the one on the face is the major problem.So can you plz,plz,plz,plz help me out to atleast lessen the growth of it..
    With regards
    Cool

    • Jan

      August 25, 2015 at 5:38 pm

      After an injury, I have a keloid on my face that initially started to flatten and disappear. Upon closer inspection I realized it wasn’t disappearing but instead it was swelling my jaw. My jaw looked huge. I mixed half Lavender Oil and half Tee Tree oil in a bottle. I shake the mixture before use and apply the mixture with my clean finger twice daily on clean skin. After 1 week or so I noticed my swollen jaw was getting smaller. I used the mixture for at least several months to a year. My jaw returned to it’s original size and the keloid is smaller than the initial size. Next, for a year, I used Mederma on the keloid twice a day then switched to daily and saw additional shrinkage. Now the keloid is small and hardly noticeable visually although it feels larger.

    • Jennifer

      July 15, 2016 at 11:51 am

      I had a keloid on my right earlobe after attempting to open an ear hole. It grew quite big. My doctor gave me two steroid injections but it only seemed to make the keloid really angry and it swelled up some more. I was scared when I went back for the next dose but she examined it once more and increased the dose of the steroid injection. By the next day the top layer of the keloid peeled and it looked like a round open red and swollen wound. Several weeks later it dried up really hard and fell off my ear leaving a slight dent. Now its about two months since that happened. I have been putting ACV on it and subsequently aloevera gel from forever living products. I sometimes massage it with hydrocortisone cream because that area is dark. I know it will take sometime for the natural colour to come back but I am too grateful to complain. I can wear my hair up again.

    • Kesha

      March 4, 2017 at 2:06 pm

      I’ve been using tea tree oil for the keliods i have on my vagina. I’ve been using it for ONLY 3 days and i see improvement already. The keliods is flatting and shrinking already. They are getting soft also blending in with my skin. Plz give Finest Nutrition Tea Tree Oil Australian a try.. It works! Keep in mind my 3 keliods are the size of a dollar coin. I will keep you posted on the changes good or bad

  4. Lisa Hamilton

    September 14, 2015 at 7:21 pm

    I have keloids on my right side of my face on my breats and on my stomach

  5. Erica

    November 25, 2015 at 12:42 pm

    Hello. I have a small keloid on my forehead after a face laceration and stitches. Ive never had this problem before but I am pregnant. I read that pregnant women can produce more collagen that causes keloids after stitches. It hurts really bad but it looks like a big pimple. When I wear hats out to keep warm my hat gets stuck to the keloid because somehow after being here for a month it still leaks puss. It’s not infected. I’ve taken antibiotics for a week and it still leaks and hurts. Someone please help me. What can I do to reduce the size? I Don’t want surgery and I know it’s probably unsafe for topical treatments.

  6. Cori

    January 19, 2016 at 4:32 am

    Steroid injection is best for a keloid. I had one on chest that is completely gone after two injections. Now I have several on my back that I need treated.

  7. Courtney

    May 16, 2016 at 7:48 am

    Please I’m at my breaking point, I’m 30 years old and I’m on dialysis I used to have a vas catholic on my chest for dialysis until I got my fistula so they took the one on my chest out and like 10 inch long keloid popped up all over my chest, also now since I have a permanent port in my arm that they had to make so I have a huge keloid from my armpit all the way to my elbow,it’s about 9 inches long and a half inch wide, also keloid are forming in the spots where they stick my needles everyday, needless to say I had to get over my vanity, so looks wise it doesn’t bother me, however, the pain is unbearable my keloid constantly itch and burn and when they aren’t doing that it feels like a big like 15g needle poking straight through them, please if anyone has any advice on how to reduce them or relieve the pain I’d great appreciate it… thank yo
    Courtney

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