FARMINGTON HILLS — Typically used for treating certain cancers, radiation therapy now is being used successfully at Botsford Cancer Center in Farmington Hills to treat patients suffering with keloids, or keloidal scars. â€¨
“Keloidal scars are very difficult to effectively treat by surgery or other means due to high recurrence rates,” said James Fontanesi, M.D., a board-certified radiation oncologist with the Botsford Cancer Center. “Studies show that the use of radiation therapy can dramatically reduce the rate of recurrences. Our patients at Botsford have shown excellent improvement rates with both external beam therapy and high dose rate brachytherapy, which target only the lesion and not surrounding and underlying healthy tissue.” â€¨ â€¨
Keloids are fibrotic tumors and show as a hard, smooth, pinkish raised growth of scar tissue at the site of an injury. These growths occur 15 times more frequently in highly pigmented people, such as persons of African, Asian, or Hispanic descent. â€¨ â€¨
Presenting a therapeutic challenge that must be addressed, keloidal lesions can cause significant pain, physical disfigurement, itching or burning, secondary infection, and psychological distress. They may not improve in appearance over time and can limit mobility if located over a joint. â€¨ â€¨
Many medical insurance companies have accepted this new treatment and have been covering radiation therapy for keloids.