Explanations of the most important scar terms

Scar formation

When our skin is injured, a wound forms. This can be caused by mechanical injuries (e.g. cuts, stabs or bites), by heat (e.g. burns or scalds) or by chemical injuries (e.g. acid burns). Superficial injuries of the skin heal without forming a scar. But as soon as the wound goes deeper, a scar forms. The body reacts to an injury in a series of coordinated steps, each helping the wound to heal.

There are three phases of scar formation:


The inflammation phase only lasts about 48–72 hours. First the wound is closed with a blood clot which stops foreign particles from penetrating into the organism and prevents infections. Growth factors are activated that stimulate the formation of new tissue.

Cell proliferation

For about 3 to 6 weeks new connective tissue is formed to fully close the wound.

Matrix remodelling

The last phase of scar formation lasts several months or even years. It takes that long for the healing process in the deeper layers of the skin to be completed, and for new tissue to form which fills out the wound completely.


The three phases of scar formation

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Explanations of the most important scar terms - Mederma

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Stand: 20-Jan-2019, 05:18 PM
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