Contact Us | Patient Portal | Search:
Printer Friendly VersionEmail A FriendAdd ThisIncrease Text SizeDecrease Text Size

Striae

 

Definition

Striae are irregular areas of skin that look like bands, stripes, or lines. Striae are seen when a person grows or gains weight rapidly or has certain diseases or conditions.

Striae are commonly called stretch marks.

Alternative Names

Striae atrophica; Stretch marks; Striae distensae

Common Causes
Home Care

There is no specific care for stretch marks. Marks often will disappear after the cause of the skin stretching is gone. Creams and ointments that claim to prevent stretch marks during pregnancy are of little value.

Avoiding rapid weight gain helps reduce stretch marks caused by obesity.

Call your health care provider if

If striae or stretch marks appear without obvious cause such as pregnancy or rapid weight gain, call your health care provider.

What to expect at your health care provider's office

You health care provider will examine you and ask questions about your symptoms, including:

  • Is this the first time that you have developed striae?
  • When did you first notice the stretchmarks?
  • What medicines have you taken?
  • Have you used a cortisone skin cream?
  • What other symptoms do you have?

If the striae are not caused by normal physical changes, tests may be done.

Considerations

Stretch marks can appear when there is rapid stretching of the skin. They are often associated with the abdominal enlargement of pregnancy. They can be found in children who have become rapidly obese. They may also occur during the rapid growth of puberty in males and females. Striae are most commonly located on the breasts, hips, thighs, buttocks, abdomen, and flank.

Stretch marks appear as parallel streaks of red, thinned, glossy skin that over time become whitish and scarlike in appearance. The stretch marks may be slightly depressed and have a different texture than normal skin.

Striae may also occur as a result of abnormal collagen formation, or a result of medications or chemicals that interfere with collagen formation. They may also be associated with longtime use of cortisone compounds, diabetes, Cushing disease, and post-pregnancy.


Images
Striae in the popliteal fossa Striae on the leg Stria
Read More

Review Date: 4/13/2009
Reviewed By: Jonathan Kantor, M.D., North Florida Dermatology Associates, Jacksonville, FL. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.
A.D.A.M., Inc. is accredited by URAC, also known as the American Accreditation HealthCare Commission (www.urac.org). URAC's accreditation program is an independent audit to verify that A.D.A.M. follows rigorous standards of quality and accountability. A.D.A.M. is among the first to achieve this important distinction for online health information and services. Learn more about A.D.A.M.'s editorial policy, editorial process and privacy policy. A.D.A.M. is also a founding member of Hi-Ethics and subscribes to the principles of the Health on the Net Foundation (www.hon.ch).
The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. © 1997- 2009 A.D.A.M., Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.
MAIMONIDES
MEDICAL CENTER


Home Page
Why Choose Us
Donations
Website Terms of Use
PATIENT
INFORMATION


Visitor & Patient Info
Patient Portal
We Speak Your Language
Patient Privacy
Contact Us
KEY
INFORMATION


Find a Physician
Medical Services
Maimonides In the News
Directions & Parking
FOR HEALTH
PROFESSIONALS


Medical Education
Career Opportunities
Nurses & Physicians
Staff Intranet Access

Maimonides Medical Center    |    4802 Tenth Avenue    |    Brooklyn, NY 11219    |    718.283.6000