Striae distensae (sretch marks) can occur under a number of circumstances.


Striae are more common in women but can occur in men as well.


Striae occur when some combination of the following occurs:

(1) lateral distention of the skin

(2) glucocorticoid or estrogenic exess

(3) defect in connective tissue


Lateral distention of the skin, usually with stretching:

(1) pregnancy (striae gravidarum)

(2) obesity

(3) breast augmentation surgery

(4) ascites


Increase in glucocorticoids and/or estogens:

(1) pregnancy

(2) puberty

(3) Cushing's syndrome

(4) exogenous steroid therapy

(5) obesity

(6) chronic liver disease


Defect in connective tissue:

(1) Marfan's syndrome


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