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Dr. Andrew Rynne
Dr. Andrew Rynne

Family Physician

Exp 50 years

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Article Home Skin Disorders Treatment of acne scars

Treatment of acne scars

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Acne also called as pimples or blemishes is an localized skin inflammation as a result of over activity of oil glands at the base of hair follicles which happens due to stimulation by male harmones commonly seen at puberty. Any red or Hyperpigmented skin defect or colour change present even after 1 year of acne lesion has healed is called an acne scar



There are two types of acne scarring. They are: 


Hypertrophic scarring, which results in a growth of tissue. Excess collagen is produced, and in severe cases, large outgrowths may result.

Atrophic scarring, which results in a loss of tissue. This type of scarring is much more common than hypertrophic scarring. There are several types:

  • Atrophic macules. These are small, bluish-whitish skin colorations, and are usually less visible than other types of scarring.
  • Depressed fibrotic scars. These are large, depressed valleys on the surface of the skin. They are usually jagged.
  • Follicular macular atrophy, or perifollicular elastolysis. This consists in small, slightly raised lesions, similar in appearance to whiteheads.
  • Ice-pick scars. These less severe versions of depressed fibrotic scars.
  • Soft scars. These are gentle, scar-like depressions in the skin. They are usually small, and either circular or linear.


Acne scars are stubborn, and no single treatment is best for everyone. Various procedures can improve your complexion, however.

  • Chemical peels improve and smooth the texture of the facial skin using a chemical solution that causes the skin to blister and eventually peel off.
  • As another option, you may consider Microdermabrasion to remove the cells on the surface of the skin or dermabrasion to completely remove the top layer of skin.
  • Various laser treatments can also be used to treat acne scars.
  • One option may be to inject collagen or fat under the skin and into the acne scars. This fills out or stretches the skin, which makes acne scars less noticeable. Results are temporary, so you'd need to repeat the injections periodically.
  • Subcision is a process used to treat deep rolling scars left behind by acne or other skin diseases. Essentially the process involves separating the skin tissue in the affected area from the deeper scar tissue. This allows the blood to pool under the affected area, eventually causing the deep rolling scar to level off with the rest of the skin area.

  • In some cases, surgery to remove deeply indented acne scars is an option.

Signs and symptoms

  • Comedones. Comedones are created when the openings of hair follicles become clogged and blocked with oil secretions, dead skin cells and sometimes bacteria.
  • Papules. These are small raised bumps that signal inflammation or infection in the hair follicles. Papules may be red and tender.
  • Pustules. Similar to papules, pustules are red, tender bumps with white pus at their tips.
  • Nodules. These are large, solid, painful lumps beneath the surface of the skin. They're formed by the buildup of secretions deep within hair follicles.
  • Cysts. These are painful, pus-filled lumps beneath the surface of the skin. These boil-like infections can cause scars.

When these remnants of acne are left on the skin even after the acne subsides the scarring occurs.