On an episode of "The Doctors," Dr. Stephen Greenberg demonstrates several techniques he uses for scar removal on "Dancing with the Stars" contestant Witney Carson, including micro needling and IPL . Combined, the treatments can eliminate the discoloration and rough textures of all types of scars. He also discusses home remedies that patients can use to prevent excessive scarring, such as creams, pads, and regular sunscreen application.
Dr. Stork: Before the break, "Dancing with the Stars" pro, Witney Carson, opened up for the first time about her melanoma diagnosis and treatment. Well, now it's time to treat her scars with plastic surgeon Dr. Stephen Greenberg. And I know you're going to use a combination type of treatment for her, but are you ready to get started?
Witney: I'm really ready. Yay! So excited.
Dr. Greenberg: You'll be fine. So we use a combination of something called intense pulsed light, which helps to get the pigment away, the red spots and the purpleness that you have to your scar. And we also laser it with something called an erbium laser. We'll smooth it all out.
Today, we're going to start with something called microneedling. It's little tiny, fine needles. This is what we use in that vampire facelift. This is a way to rejuvenate the face, but now we've applied it to the foot and to scars throughout the body. So it's actually pretty simple to do and it really doesn't hurt all that much. And what it will do is it helps to polish away those scars. It doesn't happen right away, but it happens over the next few weeks. You'll start to see it lighter and lighter. When we use it with the intense pulsed light and the other lasers, we should be able to get rid of most, if not all of the scar.
Witney: Oh, wow.
Dr. Stork: What are you feeling, Witney? Anything down there?
Witney: Lots of tingling.
Dr. Greenberg: Yeah, these are . . .
Dr. Stork: Not bad?
Witney: Not bad. Not bad.
Dr. Stork: And how many treatments are required for something like this in the laser, in terms of . . .
Dr. Greenberg: So we typically laser about three to five times and we do this combination microneedling at the same time. It works great when you combine all these technologies. It shouldn't be so bad. It will take it all away.
Dr. Stork: The other thing I wanted to ask, which I think, Witney, you probably . . . look, you couldn't help it. This literally broke back open, causing a bigger scar. What kinds of things folks can do at home to prevent these bigger scars in the first place or treat them?
Dr. Greenberg: There are a lot of home remedies. You go to the regular drug store, you can buy any of those home remedies. They actually work. You do it along with massage, there are little pads that you can buy to help compress scars. But really we, as plastic surgeons, can go a little bit deeper and much more using the technology will help get rid of it even better. But at home, I would start with the creams, I would start with the little pads, and then see your board-certified dermatologist or plastic surgeon to evaluate it further.
Dr. Stork: And I know you guys always tell your patients, "Sunscreen on those scars," right?
Dr. Greenberg: Sunscreen every day of the year, sunny or not, whether it's a scar or the rest of the body.
Dr. Stork: And before we go, one last time, one last opportunity, all those young people out there Using the tanning bed, what do you want to say?
Witney: Don't do it, you guys, seriously.
Dr. Stork: Take it from Witney.
Witney: Take it from me. That's why I wanted to come to this show, just to raise awareness. Don't think that you're invincible. I am 21 and I got this. Don't do the tanning beds. Do spray tans. They look really nice, I promise.
Dr. Stork: It works just as good. Thanks for being the spokesperson on this. We really appreciate that. Best of luck on the scar treatment. Thanks, Dr. Greenberg. We appreciate you as well. Of course, you can cheer for Witney on Season 21 of "Dancing With The Stars." It's every Monday at 8/7 Central on ABC.