Do Keloid Scars Have Pus?

Do Keloid Scars Have Pus
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Do keloids have pus in them? This is the question I got from a reader who had a keloid. If you, too, have had a keloid and are wondering if it has pus, then this article will tell you whether or not it does.

This is a question we’re often asked about ourselves. It’s also something that has been passed on from one person to another for many years. The answer is yes and no — or maybe both at once! Let’s take a closer look…

What Is A Keloid Scar?

A keloid (or “keloid”) is a type of raised scar tissue formed by overactive collagen production. Collagen is what gives your skin its structure; it provides support and strength so you don’t tear when you laugh, cry, or get angry. When excessive amounts of collagen build-up under the surface of the skin, they cause a bumpy protrusion called a keloid.

These types of growths can be found anywhere there’s excess collagen, like around the eyes, nose, mouth, neckline, armpits, chest area, knees, ankles, fingers, etc. They tend to grow bigger with age because new cells keep adding more collagen underneath the skin rather than breaking down old, dead collagen fibers. In fact, these bumps might even start growing before birth since pregnant women sometimes develop keloids during their pregnancy.

Keloids are mostly hereditary but can also happen due to trauma, infection, surgery, radiation therapy, burns, allergic reactions, poor nutrition, smoking, stress, and sun exposure. There isn’t any known cure for keloids yet, which makes prevention all the more important.

The Truth About Pus-filled Keloids

There’s a popular belief out there that if you suffer from keloids, then you’ll likely end up having a pus-filled keloid where infected fluid collects inside the body part affected by the scar. While it may seem true based upon how ugly and inflamed these lesions appear, it doesn’t mean anything other than that you’ve got a nasty case of scarring going on.

In actuality, only 0% – 2% of patients who undergo surgical excision will actually develop a postoperative wound complication such as infection. And less than 1% percent of patients who undergo non-surgical treatments like dermabrasion experience complications like infection. So while it’s certainly possible that someone could become infected after getting their keloids surgically removed, the chances aren’t very high. This goes for treating keloids through injection therapies too.

If you were to see a doctor with a suspected keloid, they’d probably want to rule out infections first using simple lab tests done via blood work, urine analysis, x-rays, and physical examinations. If everything looks good, they would most likely send off samples of the lesion to test for bacteria, fungi, viruses, parasites, fungal spores, mycobacteria, and yeasts just to name a few.

Once those results come back negative, the practitioner would know exactly whether or not the patient had contracted an infectious condition. As you can imagine, this takes time and money, so if doctors suspect a problem right away, patients should definitely ask questions regarding why waiting was necessary.

While rare, it does happen occasionally that a patient gets a positive result back from bacterial cultures showing signs of infection. However, it’s usually pretty easy to treat these cases without needing complex antibiotics or intravenous fluids. For example, topical ointments containing benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid, sulfur, tea tree oil, vitamin E, zinc oxide, and clotrimazole can help reduce swelling and itching associated with infection. Topical corticosteriods can be used to relieve inflammation caused by infection. Oral anti-fungal medications can also be prescribed to remove fungus causing irritation. Finally, oral antibiotic pills can be taken to clear up yeast infections.

So although it’s possible for a keloid to turn into an oozing mess filled with pus, it’s extremely unlikely unless the patient develops a severe infection requiring medical attention. You shouldn’t worry needlessly about contracting an infection simply because you have a keloid scar, especially considering that most keloids heal within a year or two.

Can I Prevent Keloids By Taking Supplements To Reduce Stress Levels Or Avoid Sun Exposure?

Unfortunately, taking supplements won’t prevent keloids either. Although research shows that certain vitamins and minerals affect cell metabolism, none of these nutrients have proven scientific evidence supporting claims that they can effectively treat keloids. On top of that, keloids typically form in areas exposed to sunlight anyway, making UV protection unnecessary.

However, wearing sunscreen lotions with SPF 15+ daily can protect against harmful UVA rays, reducing the risk of developing melanoma cancer later in life. Make sure to check labels carefully for ingredients that contain oxybenzone, octocrylene, avobenzone, ecamsule, homosalate, octisalate, octocrylene, licoprene, mexoryl, octisparoxyethyl procyanidin, octocrylene, para-aminobenzoic acid, and zinc dihydrochalcone. Also avoid products labeled organic, chemical-free, mineral-based, hypoallergenic, fragranced-free, or fragrance/chemical-free.

How Can I Get Rid Of Them Naturally Without Surgery Or Using Unnatural Cosmetics That Contain Salicylic Acid?

You can try home remedies, laser removal, injections, prescription creams, compresses, medicated tape strips, steroid injections, plastic wrap compression bandages, and several others.

Some natural methods include applying herbal oils, petroleum jelly, honey, essential oils, vinegar, baking soda paste, warm water bath, and apple cider vinegar mixed with salt applied directly onto the keloid every day until healed. Laser removal involves freezing the keloid with liquid nitrogen followed by cutting it off with scissors. Steroid injections involve injecting steroids into the lump itself to decrease inflammation.

Compress treatments use elasticized wraps made of gauze, cotton fabric, or nylon netting placed around the affected area to compress the scar and promote healing. Medicated tape strip treatments require placing adhesive tapes soaked with medication solutions on the affected area for four weeks. Plastic wrap compression bandage treatments last longer than short-term ones by providing greater pressure and covering multiple areas at once.

Lastly, apple cider vinegar combined with salt application works well for preventing keloids from forming.

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