We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.
Advertiser Disclosure
Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.
How We Make Money
We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently of our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What Are Striae Distensae?

Tricia Christensen
By
Updated May 17, 2024
Our promise to you
WiseGeek is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At WiseGeek, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject-matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

Striae distensae are better known as stretch marks, and they are linear scars that first appear pink and eventually fade to a white or translucent color. In most cases, they’re not a medically dangerous sign, but some people feel self-conscious about them. It’s also not always clear why some people get striae, while others don’t. Some common causes of their appearance are normal growth, pregnancy, steroid use, or Cushing’s disease. A few treatments for stretch marks exist, but they are usually not medically necessary or totally successful.

When striae distensae first appear they may be pink or purple in color. Occasionally, people notice itching of the skin as the marks form. In some patients, these marks will fade almost totally, but others may continue to have evidence of them. Sometimes wrinkling of the skin around multiple striae distensae also occurs, which may draw more attention to this skin scarring. A number of individuals suffer poor self-esteem when numerous striae are in evidence, and they might avoid showing those parts of the body where they occur, such as arms, legs, hips or belly.

Medical research has not fully discovered why people develop stretch marks, though there are times when they are most likely to form. During puberty, rapid growth is associated with striae distensae on the breasts, arms, buttocks, and legs. Quick weight gain may also result in more stretch marks. Further, in pregnancy, the arms, breasts and especially the belly may be more likely to show evidence of striae distensae.

People who use steroids for bodybuilding or for medical purposes tend to get these marks, too. Another possible explanation is Cushing’s disease. This is a high level of cortisol in the body, which causes the face to become rounded and results in a high number of striae. It may result from natural causes or from taking certain steroids.

There are some potential treatments for striae distensae. Retinoid products or certain fruit acids may diminish the look of scarring. Treatment usually works best when it is undertaken soon after striae distensae are noticed. This isn’t always possible. If striae are occurring as a result of changing circumstances, like an expanding belly in pregnancy, it may not be safe or appropriate to try to remove them until the pregnancy is over.

In most cases, treatment is optional, and it is unlikely to be covered by insurance. Since striae distensae generally aren’t considered a health hazard, treating them falls into the category of optional or cosmetic surgeries. Sometimes the position of a scar might place people at slightly more risk for skin rupturing if a serious injury were to occur. In these cases, removing a scar might be considered medically necessary, but the chances of this occurring are quite rare.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Tricia Christensen
By Tricia Christensen
With a Literature degree from Sonoma State University and years of experience as a WiseGeek contributor, Tricia Christensen is based in Northern California and brings a wealth of knowledge and passion to her writing. Her wide-ranging interests include reading, writing, medicine, art, film, history, politics, ethics, and religion, all of which she incorporates into her informative articles. Tricia is currently working on her first novel.
Discussion Comments
Tricia Christensen
Tricia Christensen
With a Literature degree from Sonoma State University and years of experience as a WiseGeek contributor, Tricia...
Learn more
WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.