Stretch marks are lines or bands caused by stretching of the skin’s connective tissue.
They often occur during periods of growth and body changes, such as significant weight gain, puberty, pregnancy, and extreme muscle building, due to rapid expanding of the skin. Similarly, people who are taking steroid medications or using topical steroid creams may be more likely to get stretch marks because steroid hormones weaken collagen in the skin, making it more likely to break.
When the middle layer of skin stretches too quickly, some of its collagen fibers can break. This allows underlying blood vessels to show through, leaving behind the telltale red or purplish marks. Over time, they fade to a white or silver color as blood vessels heal. Once they appear, they do not usually go away.
Experts have tried for years to find an effective treatment for these marks. Unfortunately, stretch marks can’t be removed completely.
Despite the claims on the bottle, no cream or oil has been proven to help prevent or treat stretch marks, as they occur in the deep dermal layer of the skin, where moisturizers and creams cannot reach.
In our office we use nano-fractionated radiofrequency Venus Viva or Microneedling, augmented by Platelet Rich Plasma therapy, to non-invasively stimulate collagen formation and reduce the depth and size of stretch marks.
Venus Freeze radiofrequency used for skin tightening has also showed an improvement in the appearance of stretch marks.