What Causes Internal Scar Tissue?

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  • Written By: C. Daw
  • Edited By: O. Wallace
  • Last Modified Date: 12 March 2019
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Internal scar tissue can be formed by various external factors, such as from trauma, surgery, and even repetitive usage. Scar tissue is generally formed by the body as it fights to repair and protect the injured area. The healing process will begin by forming fibrosis tissue around the injury, effectively forming a web that protects it from further harm, while allowing it to heal through the body’s natural processes. During this stage the injured cells turn into adhesions, which are basically dead cells that need to be replaced. These adhesions develop into internal scar tissue as they are replaced with live, healthy cells.

One of the most common ways for this kind of scar tissue to form is through various different surgical procedures. During most surgery procedures the muscles have to be cut in order for the medical specialist to operate on the problem area. These incisions cause a separation of the tissue, and the body immediately responds by forming the protective web around the cut. The fibrosis tissue, along with a body chemical known as collagen, then begins working to repair the injured cells by replacing them with new ones. As the area heals, the adhesions that were present will develop into permanent scar tissue.


Impact injuries also cause the same reaction inside of the body. Internal scar tissue will be formed as the fibrosis tissues, along with collagen, rushes to protect and heal the area of impact, similar to what was described above. However, an impact injury also causes a formation of other adhesions because of inflammation. The swelling that is caused from internal injuries such as these form pockets of fluid inside of the impacted area, which forms separate adhesions from the actual dead cells. This is why severe trauma may require surgical procedures to remove the pockets, allowing the body to heal without having an excess amount of scar tissue.

The final way internal scar tissue can be formed is through repetitive movements. These injuries cause a muscle or tendon to weaken, which eventually leads to tears or rips. The internal adhesions caused will form into scar tissue that can cause other medical problems near the area. This is why in these types of injuries, one of the first steps in the healing process involves physical therapy, which not only builds the surrounding muscles and tendons, but also reduces the amount of scar tissue by breaking it up into smaller sections, which can then usually be expelled by the body through various internal processes.


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