Acne scars are red or brown marks left behind on the skin after an acne lesion heals. Excisional surgery or acne scar excision is a method to treat depressed acne scars. The goal is to convert a big, deep scar to a small, flat scar which can then be treated with laser resurfacing. All the techniques listed below are performed under anaesthesia.
- Punch excision: Punch excision is a technique used to correct ice-pick and deep boxcar scars. In this method a round, sharp and small-sized (matched to the size of the scar) punch biopsy tool is used to remove the entire defect. The edges will be sutured.
- Punch elevation: Punch elevation is a technique used for wide boxcar scars. A punch tool similar to a punch excision tool is used to excise the base of the scar, but the walls of the scar remain intact. After the scar is removed, the remaining basal tissue is then raised to the surface of the skin and attached with sutures or steri-strips.
- Subcutaneous incision: This technique is used to treat rolling and depressed scars. A special needle is inserted under the skin to separate the skin from the scarred surface. The scarred surface will then be flattened.
- Shave excision: Shave excision is a technique to treat elevated and hypertrophic scars or keloids. The scar is removed with a flexible blade or scalpel to bring it in level with the surrounding skin.
- Fusiform (elliptical) excision: This commonly used technique is preferred for elevated and hypertrophic scars as well as depressed wide scars.