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Stretch Marks

A Blog on Striae by Dr. Loftus

We help women from across the United States with body contouring procedures. As a result, we deal with our share of stretch marks. What are stretch marks and why do they happen? More importantly, what can you do about them? Stretch marks are also known as "striae." They are essentially tears in the deep layer of the skin, called the dermis. They tend to happen during periods of growth or weight gain when the skin is stretched. If the skin is stretched beyond its ability to adapt, small cracks or fractures form in the dermis. As the body heals, new collagen is formed in these areas, similar to a scar. Stretch marks are often red or pink at first, then fade to a more pale color with time.

Certain steroids and hormones seem to predispose a person to developing striae by decreasing the skin’s ability to adapt to stretch. This explains why teenagers going through their growth spurts and pregnant women are more likely to develop them. There seems to be a genetic component as well, because some women develop them without significant weight fluctuation.

It is unclear if you can prevent stretch marks. If you have a genetic predisposition to form them, you are probably out of luck. However, avoiding excess weight gain is important if you seem to be more prone to striae.

If you develop stretch marks, you can easily find many lotions, potions, and creams designed to help. There is not any evidence that any of these products eliminate stretch marks more than moisturizer and massage alone. I suspect these products are a more expensive version of this therapy.

Fractionated lasers, like Fraxel, may have some potential to improve some stretch marks, but the improvement (if any) is nominal.

The only way to remove stretch marks is with surgery. Most stretch marks form on the tummy and hips, although they can occur nearly anywhere. Tummy tucks, or abdominoplasty, remove extra skin, including the stretch marks. Contact us to set up a consultation.

Dr. Loftus

About Dr. Loftus


Dr. Loftus is a female plastic surgeon who is considered a national authority on plastic surgery, having appeared on numerous talk shows as an expert. Her book has become a best-selling book on plastic surgery and has earned her the reputation as a vocal advocate of patient safety, satisfaction, and education in plastic surgery. No wonder her patients have such great things to say about her…
Dr. Loftus standing by staff
My results are amazing - Dr. Loftus is amazing!
My friends can't believe how natural I look!
I had no pain after surgery and recovery was so easy.
The entire experience was fabulous!
I am a nurse who has worked with many doctors, Dr. Loftus is the best!
The care was exceptional and results are incredible!
My results are better than I ever imagined!
Dr. Loftus is a rare surgeon: highly skilled, personable and compassionate!
My experience from start to finish was completely extraordinary!
Awesome results from a skilled and caring doctor.
I love love love Dr. Loftus and everyone in the office!
I've never felt so comfortable and understood in a doctor's office.
I felt so comfortable and barely had any pain at all.
I never knew I could look this good! Thank you Dr. Loftus!!!
Never met such a warm and caring staff anywhere else.
If only every doctor could be like Dr. Loftus, how very fortunate we would be.

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Cincinnati: The Christ Hospital
2139 Auburn Avenue, Suite 201
Cincinnati, OH 45219
(513) 793-4000
5 minutes from downtown Cinci,
At the Christ Medical Office Building

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Northern Kentucky
1881 Dixie Highway, Suite 300
Fort Wright, KY 41011
859-426-5000
3 minutes from downtown Cincinnati &
visible from I-71/75

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