Q&A: Getting Rid of Stretch Marks After Pregnancy?

Ask A Doctor Question: 

Hi, I'm a 17 year old single mother of a 6 month old son. During my pregnancy I developed horrible strech marks that completely cover my stomach and go in circles around my belly button. I was wondering what type of surgery would best get rid of my battle scars and an approximate price. I would love to show off my stomach in a bikini again! 

- Julie


Csaba Magassy, M.D., F.A.C.S. -

Dear Julie- Thank you so much for your question in regards to your stretch marks. The dilemma is how to erase the tell-tale signs of pregnancy.  The best method available, at the present time, is what we call an abdominoplasty which involves excising (cutting away) the excess of skin which is most of the stretch marks. There are other modalities which will make them look less conspicuous but not completely remove them.  One consultation with a competent plastic surgeon will determine the quality of your skin and what is available at the present time to give you the best possible result.  The price range is anywhere from $8000 for an abdominoplasty to $2000 for mutiple laser treatments.
Hoping to hear from you in the not so distant future and looking forward to meeting you soon.

--Csaba Magassy, M.D., F.A.C.S.
Mclean, VA


Julie, Unfortunately, there isn't really anything likely to make any meaningful improvement in those "battle scars". Typically, removing the affected skin ('tummy tuck') is the way to bring different looking skin into the area. It is highly likely at age 17 that this would not be an option for you at this time.
Time is your best ally as they typically fade more as time passes by for up to one to two years.
Congratulations on your new baby!

Miami, FL


Glenn Lyle, M.D. -

Thanks for your question. At such a young age, I would not recommend any surgical treatments at this point. For one, you are still only 6 months postpartum and your skin may recover. I would use good skin care- even cocoa butter or moisturizers. I don't have a lot of confidence in creams which claim to reduce stretch marks. I also would wait til you've had more children if you plan to in the near future. Really loose Skin may require a tummy tuck but I wouldn't do one at such a young age. Laser treatments such as Titan may also help but I have no experience with that. Good Luck!

--Glenn Lyle, M.D.
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