Is 5-FU Injections better Than Kenalog For Problematic Scars?

Q: Hi Dr. Eppley, I emailed you about a month ago about getting 5-FU injections for lumpy scar tissue underneath my nipple for a revision gynecomastia surgery I had about 4 1/2 months ago.  I have been really busy at work and unable to get time off to make an appt.  Last time you emailed me about a month ago you said I could schedule an appt. and possibly get a 5-FU or kenalog injection.  I would really like to do this but an injection of kenalog makes me nervous due to the possibility of skin atrophy and other side effects I have heard about.  I have heard that 5-FU mixed with a small amount of kenalog does not really carry these side effects and can work quite effectively.  I have to travel about two hours or so to get there so I just want to make sure that 5-FU injections are a possibility before I make the trip.  Also I have an issue about the scar I have from the surgery I had and I saw on your website that you deal with scar management.  I know that the scar I have is only 4 1/2 months old but it does not seem to be getting any better and I was wondering if there are any non-surgical procedures or techniques, such as laser therapy, that you specialize in that could help to minimize this scar?  Thank you for any help you may be able to give me.

A: We can certainly do 5-FU injections for scar therapy as that is an item I keep stocked her for injection treatments. While it is uncertain whether 5-FU is really better than Kenalog, it does have a higher safety profile. Kenalog done judiciously (low dose), however, can be done without significant side effects as well. As for scar management, there are numerous options regarding non-surgical approaches depending upon the scar issue such as hypertrophy or redness. Most commonly we do pulsed light therapy (Broad Band Light, BBL) or laser treatments. That decision would have to be made at the time of examination.

Dr. Barry Eppley

Indianapolis Indiana