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Striae or Stretch Marks

Written by
Dr. Suvash Sahu
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.

Published on Sep 15, 2016 and last reviewed on Sep 07, 2018   -  1 min read


Striae or stretch marks are common during puberty and pregnancy. This article discusses the causes and management of this cosmetically concerned disease.

Striae or Stretch Marks

Striae are visible linear scars, which form due to over stretching of skin. It usually occurs due to dermal damage in over stretched skin. Many factors play a role like hormones (corticosteroids), mechanical stress and genetic predisposition. It usually develops between the age of 5-50 years.

During puberty, striae appear in areas where there is rapid increase in size. The most common sites are the axillae, outer aspects of the thighs and the lumbosacral regions. In boys, thighs and buttocks and in girls, breast is the common site. In women, striae appear more common in abdomen post pregnancy.

Early lesions may be raised and irritable, but sooner they become flat, smooth and livid red or bluish (striae rubra) in color. They are commonly irregularly linear several centimeters long and 1 mm to 10 mm wide. Usually, after some years, they fade and become inconspicuous. The lesions may become atrophic with the skin surface showing a fine, white and wrinkled appearance known as striae alba.

Other Causes of Striae:

  1. Oral Prednisolone or other corticosteroid therapy.
  2. Cushing syndrome.
  3. Use of anabolic steroid is common among adolescents, especially by those participating in competitive sports and body building.


Before starting treatment other causes of striae should be ruled out. Like stopping the intake of exogenous anabolic steroids if an individual is using it and Cushing syndrome should be ruled out by doing serum cortisol level.

To get rid of stretch marks, consult a cosmetologist online -->

Last reviewed at:
07 Sep 2018  -  1 min read




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