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Skin Care and Diseases

Lip biopsy scar

09/07/2005

Question:

I had a lip biopsy done 2 months ago to see why my lips swell and burn. The result of the biopsy didn`t provide any useful information. My lips got better on their own but now I have marks left over from the biopsy. There are 2 little lines where the incision was made, a small area next to that with hard scar tissue under it, and a pea sized area on the other side of the lines that is slightly indented and a darker color than the rest of my lip. My doctor won`t give me a straight answer on whether this will ever go back to normal or suggestions to help with recovery. Will my lip ever go back to looking like it did before the biopsy?

Answer:

It is difficult for me to answer your question of "Will my lip ever go back to look like it did before the biopsy?".  A number of issues might arise.  First of all the size of the biopsy, the direction of the biopsy, the method of closure, the presence or absence of post-operative infection, and probably the most important of all -- your ability to heal.  Recognize that any biopsy results in a scar.  Scars tend to soften and blend into surrounding tissue in most individuals over weeks, months, and even years.  I would discuss the issue specifically with the physician that biopsied your lip and express your concerns.  By being forthright your physician can bring understanding and possibly some additional treatment to help minimize your scar. 

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Response by:

Charles L Heaton, MD
Professor
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati