I Have a Lump on My Piercing, Do I Have a Keloid?

With any body piercing there is a chance of developing scar tissue around or over the fistula (piercing hole.)
There are four main types of scarring relating to piercing, all which have different appearances.
If you are experiencing any problems with your piercing, whether it was pierced at Ethereal Aesthetics or not, email etherealaesthetics@outlook.com, or book in for a troubleshooting session via Setmore
Whilst some of these issues are out of the realm of a body piercer and I am unable to officially diagnose anything, I am more than happy to advise and point you in the right direction.

Many piercing lumps are often wrongly identified and treated as Keloid Scarring, but in reality, the majority are easily treated irritation lumps if caught soon enough; this type of scarring is actually very rare and is usually hereditary.

Where as hypergranulation, atrophic and hypertrophic scarring are contained to the area immediately surrounding or over a fistula, keloid scarring doesn’t just cover a wound but also spreads far beyond it.

Keloid scarring tends to form over a long period of time, whereas other types of scarring typically appear in the first 4-8 weeks of piercing’s healing period. They can increase in size over a period of years, spreading far from the initial trauma site.
It can take on bizarre shapes and sizes unlike regular scarring and can resemble melted plastic that has solidified. Keloids can also vary in colour from pale pink to much dark purplish brown.

Keloid scarring can also occur from the result of other trauma to the skin, as well as piercings including ; acne, chicken pox, surgical incisions, burns, puncture from vaccination and in some extremely rare cases can even develop when there has been no trauma to an area.

When the skin is healing the fibroblast cells increase the production of the protein collagen which strengthens skin by replacing dead skin cells.
Keloids occur when these cells overwork in response to an injury – they produce around twenty times as much collagen needed to heal a wound and this abundance of collagen results in a keloid scar.

The chest, upper arms and ears are the most common sites for keloid scarring to occur but they can happen anywhere on the body.  They do not tend to appear on the face but there have been cases of the scars occurring along the jawline and in the cheeks.

Unfortunately there aren’t any D-I-Y fixes for keloid scarring and a dermatologist or plastic surgeon may be need to be consulted.

 There is limited research into the effectiveness of these therapies and usually two or more must be used in conjunction for more positive results.
It is also quite common for these scars to return after they have been treated as they are linked to your genetics.

Please DO NOT trust Google! Tea Tree Oil, Asprin Paste, Salt Paste/Solution, No Pull/Silicone Disks are all gimmicks and are not appropriate for cleaning piercings or treating irritation. At best these are incredibly short term fixes that can end up causing more harm than good in the long run. 


As with any piercing issue, please get in touch – though it must be noted that I'm unable to diagnose anything and if you suspect you might be developing a true Keloid Scar, please consult a dermatologist. For more information please see the links below. 
(Photo used with client's permission.)

Irritation Lumps
Atrophic Scarring 
Hypertrophic Scarring 



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