Stretch Marks: Symptoms & Signs

Medically Reviewed on 4/2/2022

Stretch marks are painless streaks on the skin that develop in areas when the skin stretches or shrinks rapidly.

Signs and symptoms of stretch marks include indented streaks or lines on the abdomen, breasts, hips, buttocks, or other places on the body. The streaks may have a pink, red, black, blue, or purplish color. Bright streaks may initially develop that over time fade to a lighter color. In some people, the streaks may cover large areas of the body.

Causes of Stretch Marks

These scars are most common in women after pregnancy, following growth spurts in puberty, after weight training with rapid muscle growth, and any time after rapid weight gain or loss. Stretch marks can also be caused by long-term use of corticosteroid creams on the skin.

Other stretch marks symptoms and signs

  • Pink, Red, Black, Blue, or Purple Indented Streaks or Lines on the Abdomen, Breasts, Hips, Buttocks, or Other Places on the Body


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Jameson, J. Larry, et al. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, 20th Ed. New York: McGraw-Hill Education, 2018.