Keloids | Overview


What are keloids?

After your skin is injured, your cells try to repair it by forming a scar. In some people, the scar tissue keeps forming long after the wound heals. This extra scar tissue causes a red, raised area on your skin that is called a keloid (say: “key-loyd”). Keloids don’t usually hurt, but they may feel itchy or sensitive to the touch.

Keloids can develop after your skin is burned or cut. They can also develop after you get a body piercing or a tattoo, or have surgery. Keloids sometimes show up 3 months or longer after your skin is injured. Some continue to grow for years.


Management of Keloids and Hypertrophic Scars by Gregory Juckett, MD, MPH, and Holly Hartman-Adams, MD (American Family Physician August 01, 2009,

Written by editorial staff

Reviewed/Updated: 04/14
Created: 10/09