Innovative Treatment for Burn Scars

The University of Chicago Medicine’s Burn and Complex Wound Center offers state-of-the-art laser treatments to help manage symptomatic and visible burn scars.

Laser treatment is most appropriate for thick, raised scars. These scars — also known as hypertrophic scars — result from abnormal or excessive healing. They are often red or inflamed and frequently cause significant functional impairment. For example, the scar may make it difficult for you to bend a joint. They may also cause emotional distress when they are located on the face, neck or other visible area.

While laser treatment will not completely remove burn scars, it can improve functional abilities you may have lost due to scarring. You might also experience a softening of your burn scars and less itching. The appearance of scars may improve after laser treatments, but you should not expect a dramatic improvement in how scars look with laser treatment alone.

Laser treatment may also be offered as part of a more comprehensive burn scar reconstructive treatment program tailored for you. Your surgeon will assess whether other treatments, such as surgery, tissue expansion or medication, would help you reach your goals.

Frequently Asked Questions

Our Expert Burn Surgeon

Our plastic surgeons are among a small number of burn specialists in the Midwest providing laser treatment for burn scars.

Along with skilled surgeons, your team will also include advanced practice nurses and physical and occupational therapists devoted to treating burns. All of our team members are involved in decision making about whether laser treatment can truly improve your burn scars and return any lost functional abilities.