I had heart (sternotomy) surgery a couple of years ago, since then I developped 3 small keloid - hypertrophic scars. Which in your view, would be the best and safest treatment, Kenalog or Depo Metrol injections?
Best Treatment for Sternotomy Hypertrophic Small Scars Kenalog or Depo Metrol Injections?
Doctor Answers 3
In the right hands, steroid injections can be helpful. Laser therapy with a V-Beam can also be helpful or other vascular lasers. See a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon or Board Certified Dermatologist for this issue.
Best treatment for raised red scars
There is a long list of treatments for excess scar tissue, or keloids. We don't know why some individuals are predisposed to this problem. We do know it is much more common in the thicker skin areas, such as the upper central chest.
Kenalog, or triamcinalone acetonide, is a commonly used medication that is injected into these scars. Although sometimes successful, I find many scars do not respond, and some get worse. Furthermore I have seen very serious complications from Kenalog, such as skin whitening, thinning, or even melting away all surrounding fat and creating a big depression in the area.
I would advise you consider other treatment options including silicone sheeting, vascular laser, and/or 5-fluorouracil injections. I use some or all of these on my patients with better success, and less side effects than the steroid injections.
Yoash R. Enzer, MD
Laser + Kenalog can work for thickened scars
Hypertrophic scars which are common for sternotomy scars are different from keloids, but I have found good success with using pulsed dye laser in combination with kenalog in the same treatment visit followed down the road with some fractionated laser therapy.