Scar Remedies: Q&A
HISTORY OF SCARRING
04/17/2012: N from Anonymous: "Hello Ted, I know you are overwhelmed, so for the sake of brevity I will simply say that I am dealing with scar tissue that is extremely resilient. I have a history of scarring on almost any wound. The scars are anywhere from a cm to an inch in diameter, symmetrical and asymmetrical, raised (up to a cm) and some semi-flat.
Briefly, some of the treatments I have tried are as follows:
- Apple Cider Vinegar (poor results, aggravated/inflamed the scar)
- Coconut Oil (little to no change, only softens the scar)
- Lavender & Tee Tree 50% blend (little to no change)
- Iodine 5% - (works using peel process, very tedious and larger scars unaffected)
- Baking Soda & Vinegar (no change)
- Dissolved Aspirin (no change)
Hypertrophic scars, keloids or viral? Treatment options? You are quite skilled on the topic and I would appreciate your opinion."
04/19/2012: Ted from Bangkok, Thailand replies: "Based on your feedback of lavender, tree tea oil, and dissolved aspirin, it does not appear to be viral. Fungus would be helped somewhat with apple cider vinegar and baking soda, so we are left with hypertrophic scars possibly due to deficiencies of some kind. When the healing is hampered, this is most commonly a lysine deficiency or you need supplements which help collagen synthesis. Lysine 1000 mg x 4, vitamin C 500 mg x 4, are common ones. The topical treatment is helped with allantoin 10%, urea 40%, zinc acetate 10%, chitosan dissolved in water and applied topically is one of the remedies that has helped.
10/11/2008: Diana from Atlanta, Georgia: "I found this site looking for a remedy to heal a surgical scar. I have recently had Moss Micrograhpic surgery on my nose to remove basal cell cancer. I now basically have a new left nostril formed with skin from my cheek and cartalige from my ear. The skin on my nose is still bumpy and not matching the left nostril yet. I had the second and final surgery 3 weeks ago. I also have a 2 inch scar on my cheek from where they took skin to graft to my nose. I am wondering if any of the remedies from all the information on keloids would help with this kind of scaring. I would truly appreciate any information."
10/13/2008: Joyce from Joelton, Tn replies: "To Diana from Atlanta, Think Vitamin E for preventing scarring. It can be applied externally to area, as well as taking 400 IU's at least 2 times per day. Also think Vitamin C 1 gram mealtime & bedtime and Zinc 25 to 50 mgm. morning and night for rapid healing."
INTERNAL AND EXTERNAL TREATMENT
11/22/2007: L from New York, USA: "Hello Ted. I purchased potassium bicarbonate, sodium bicarbonate, and 3% hydrogen peroxide. Can you tell what are the measurements or amounts of each? EX: 2 tb of potassium bicarbonate with 1 tb of hydrogen peroxide. I tried applying this last night and did not have any success. I am hoping I didn't have the correct measurements. Also, how long should it be applied for?"
Ted from Bangkok, Thailand replies: "
If there is a scar on the skin, the best remedy is a topical one, such as aloe vera and/or vaseline applied to the area, plus some natural vitamin E. Vitamin E reduces natural scarring while aloe vera gels and even aloe vera drinks contain allantoin to speed healing.
Internally, taking baking soda, and potassium bicarbonate reduces the scar by allowing the body to heal faster, but it won't directly reduce the scar if no topical application is used.
The remedy for baking soda is just 1/4 teaspoon and 1/4 teaspoon of potassium bicarbonate plus 3 drops of 3% H2O2 in 1 glass of water. This is taken twice a day. I had a friend whose her whole face was peeling and potentially causing real scars and it was magically relieved when I applied thinly aloe vera oil plus vitamin E and vitamin A. It should be noted that aloe vera oil works best if it is not applied everyday, but once every two or three days. However, most commercial aloe vera gel with added aloe vera oil can be applied almost everyday since the concentration in those product are below 0.5% and a vitamin E is added to prevent scarring.
If a sodium and potassium bicarbonate with peroxide is used, vitamin E should also be taken internally to reduce scarring. One interesting anti scarring remedy is to apply colorless iodine or perhaps just a simple iodine to area affected. Some doctors have noted some regeneration of skin from Iodine. Although I haven't experimented with this one yet."
TOXIC EPIDERMAL NECROLYSIS
06/28/2007: JJ from The Phillipines: "Last year, I was diagnosed of toxic epidermal necrolysis but as of now, i'm on my recovering period about the scars on my skin. my parents can't afford bringing me to a dermatologist since they prefer a homeopathic treatment. I accidentally landed on this this very informative site, Earthclinic and was very grateful about it. I doing the oil pulling therapy to completely detox my body from toxins. Sometimes, i really felt like giving up since i wasn't going out of the house for almost a year because of my skin condition. it really lowered my self esteem. The scar's disappearance is very slowly in progress. Im not taking any drugs as of now..just doing the detox every day... i really wanted to be normal again, go to school, and do anything under the sun."
Ted from Bangkok, Thailand replies: "Toxic epidermal necrolysis maybe of a staphylococcus' bacteria, since this is the only bacteria I know of that are flesh eating. Therefore the treatment is straightforward, magnesium citrate supplements 250 mg/day for days out of a week, baking soda 1/2 teaspoon in 1/2 glass of water taken twice a day, 50 mg of zinc gluconate taken once or twice a week. That's what I would do. A condition such as this is a magnesium deficiency, and the body is in a state of acidosis. Some remedy such as one whole lime freshly squeezed (about 8 teaspoon) plus 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda taken twice a day is one possible alternative besides the baking soda alone can also be of help. The conditions is life threatening, as bacteria may penetrate causing a gangrene skin condition. What I would do likely in this case is to apply very lightly the use of Milk of Magnesia (please read the ingredient and make sure they have no additive aluminum compounds, just water and magnesium hydroxide and sometimes peppermint oil) Aluminum is extremely toxic - so absolutely no aluminum! Then after the application, get a petroleum jelly plus a small amount of aloe vera oil(optional), then this is applied to the open fresh wound scars. Do not rinse the Milk of Magnesia (make sure you shake it well before using!), and apply lightly before applying the petroleum jelly. The wounds should dry up within the next days, as to the scars, perhaps colorless iodine or potassium iodide solution apply may help remove the scar. The remedy mentioned may be a bit too strong on baking soda, however, it is always best to start with 1/4 teaspoon of baking soda in 1/2 glass of water two times a day (at least) and if no problem the dose can go to 1/2 teaspoon. This is necessary to discourage staph growth, which is the key bacteria I have seen to cause this kind of condition.
WHAT TO BE DONE IF SCARS HAD DRIED OUT
JJ : "Greetings to you! Well sir, i'd really wanna thank you for such a response. i just wanna ask if what to be done if the scars had already dried out? You have mentioned the application of colorless iodine or potassium iodide solution may help remove scars. Can you give me the instructions on how to apply it? Im looking forward for another response. Thank you so much and more power!"
Ted from Bangkok, Thailand replies: "There are a couple of ways to remove scars, one is by an iodine rubbing, the other is DMSO with water, and there are others, not mentioned here. I will only described what I did to remove some scars. I think in case the scars have dried out the DMSO will work better. Iodine solution somewhat takes longer.
I once had a huge black scars on the elbow, and what I did was made an 80% DMSO plus 20% water, or sometimes a pure DMSO solution (maybe irritating) and get a white towel and rubbed the area as often as possible, and it will slowly erase most of the scars over a month's period.
Although dermatologist used a lot stronger solution than I do, depending on the nature and depth of a scar with a strong salicylic acid solution, which can vary from 5% to 20% for example which somewhat exfoliating. I tend to be more deliberate and used the DMSO solution, but it is slow.
The iodine solution (mine is a colorless one with hydroiodic acid plus potassium iodide where the iodine concentration is about 5%), which I make myself and rubbed onto the area of scars.
However, I prefer to use this in removing some age spots, which seemed to worked better for iodine, whenever a white cotton towel is rubbed (like a sandpaper) over the area. Of course, people have to experiment with that and see how well it works.
Another possibility I think is to use petroleum jelly which I also do and is a mild form of scar remover by using also a white towel and rubbed it several time when a petroleum jelly is applied. I can tell if some scars are removed whenever the towel gets or acquired a dark color and the skin seems to lighten up. It will take awhile but I think most of the scars should reduced over a month's period when enough of it is applied frequent enough. Aloe vera helps healing but I think at this stage, it is too late for now, so I guess just removing the scars is more reasonable."