What are Keloid Scars?

When a wound heals, scar tissue forms. Scars are permanent; some may fade and flatten with time, others may not. When the scar remains slightly raised and thick along the area of injury or the original wound, this is called a hypertrophic scar.

Sometimes, the scars may grow beyond the size of the original wound and become very red, thick and raised. These scars are known as keloids.

What Causes Keloids?

Keloids occur when there is an excess production of collagen in scar formation.

Some factors do increase the likelihood of keloid formation:

  • Genetic factors: people of African and Asian descent tend to be more prone to keloid formation. Keloids may run in families as well.
  • Location of injury: the chest, shoulders, jawline, earlobes are anatomical areas where keloids tend to form easily
  • Pregnancy: some women notice that keloids may develop or enlarge further during this period

What are the symptoms ?

The keloids are scars that grow beyond the area of skin damage. They can also be very itchy and painful. Depending on the location, they can also restrict movement or cause a discomfort or “tightness”. They appear as raised, thick, fleshy scars and are usually red, or darker than the surrounding skin. They can develop after surgery, trauma, or even conditions such as acne or chickenpox.

How is the diagnosis made?

A dermatologist can assess the lesion and make the diagnosis based on the clinical features of the keloid scar. Occasionally if the diagnosis is uncertain, then a small skin biopsy may be performed.

How can we treat keloids?

While keloids are not life-threatening, they can cause discomfort and affect quality of life. Many also choose to get them treated for cosmetic reasons. Surgery/excision is usually not recommended as there is a high change of recurrence. While there is no cure for keloids, there are treatment methods available to reduce the symptoms/discomfort and minimize the appearance of the scars. These include:

  • Intralesional steroid injections (usually more than one session is needed)
  • Topical steroid creams
  • Silicone dressings or gels may help to flatten the scar and reduce the appearance
  • Laser therapy – especially useful if combined with steroid injections

Skincare tips

If you are increased risk of developing keloids or already have pre-existing ones, it is advisable to avoid any unnecessary trauma to the skin; such as tattoos or piercings).

For cases of moderate to severe acne, it is prudent to seek medical treatment promptly to reduce the risk of subsequent scar formation.

Billing & Insurance

Private and Corporate Insurance

You can use your Integrated Shield Plans to pay for certain procedures. Speak to us to learn more, and you’ll be surprised at how affordable private healthcare can be. 

Why Choose Us

Modern & Patient-Centred Dermatological Care

We are dedicated to your skin health and well-being. Our results-oriented approach is suitable for a wide range of hair, skin and nail conditions. Consult our MOH-accredited dermatologist for a personalised treatment plan.


Personalised Treatment Plans


Results-Oriented Approach


Focused Aftercare For All


Honest & Ethical Practices

Dr. Lee Hwee Chyen

Medical Director & Consultant Dermatologist

MBBS (S'pore) MRCP (UK) FAMS (Dermatology)

Special Interests In:
  • Paediatric Dermatology
  • Women’s Dermatology
  • Procedural Dermatology & Lasers

Dr. Lee Hwee Chyen is an accredited Adult & Paediatric dermatologist managing a wide range of skin, hair and nail conditions. The clinic provides services for medical, surgical, cosmetic, women’s and paediatric dermatology.

  • MBBS (National University of Singapore, Singapore)
  • MRCP (Royal College of Physicians, United Kingdom)
  • Specialist Accreditation Board, Dermatology (Singapore)
  • FAMS (Academy of Medicine of Singapore, Singapore)
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