Striae cutis distensae L90.6

Author: Prof. Dr. med. Peter Altmeyer

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Last updated on: 29.10.2020

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Distensio cutis; Maculae distensae; Puberty strips; Skin cracks; Steroid atrophy; Steroidstriae; Stretch marks; striae adolescentium; striae atrophicae; striae cutis atrophicae; Striae distensae; striae gravidarum; striae pubertalis; striated atrophy

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Parallel stripy atrophy of the skin due to stretch-related (tearing) changes in the connective tissue. Such changes are observed during pregnancy (stretch marks), in obesity, after prolonged use of systemic or local glucocorticoids (steroidstria), or in rapid size growth in adolescence.

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Influence of glucocorticosteroids, estrogens and overstretching of the skin.

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Occurs in puberty (70% in girls, 40% in boys) or during pregnancy (90% usually from the 6th month), after long-term use of internal or external glucocorticoids (steroid tria), in cases of rapid weight gain, after infectious diseases with endocrinological disorders (e.g. Cushing's disease).

Clinical features
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Initially blue-reddish (Striae rubrae), later whitish, differently long and wide, jagged, parallel or diverging atrophic stripes with slightly sunken and thinned, transversely folded skin. A distinction is made between:

  • Pubertal stripes (Striae adolescentium, Striae pubertalis): Mainly lumbosacral and localized on the thigh, trochanter and suprapatellar region.
  • Stretch marks (Striae gravidarum): Mainly lateral abdominal areas, hips, thighs or mammae are affected.
  • Rapid obesity with endocrinological disorder (Striae obesitatis, Striae rubrae): Abdomen, nates, thighs or axillary folds are affected.
  • Often occurring after prolonged (usually several months) internal or external application of systemic glucocorticoids.
  • Occurs after infections such as typhoid abdominalis, paratyphoid, influenza, typhus, typhus fever, tuberculosis (Striae infectiosae). In pleuritis exsudativa localized on the contralateral side of the effusion.

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Atrophic epidermis, homogenized collagen, hardly elastic fibers.

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No causal therapy known. For pregnancy different (partly controversial) creams and ointments of different contents are offered which are supposed to reduce or prevent the formation of striae gravidarum when used regularly as a precautionary measure.


Please ask your physician for a reliable diagnosis. This website is only meant as a reference.


Last updated on: 29.10.2020