Stretch marks, medically called striae, usually appear after rapid stretching of the skin, according to MedlinePlus and the Mayo Clinic. Moms are especially prone to stretch marks, either caused by pregnancy or the resulting weight changes. Many creams and other treatments that are sold over-the-counter are ineffective in reducing the appearance of stretch marks. If they do not go away over time and the appearance disturbs you, you might investigate some of the available cosmetic surgeries that can help eliminate stretch marks.
Pulsed Dye Laser Therapy
Pulsed dye laser therapy is one of the available cosmetic surgeries to remove those unwanted stretch marks, according to the Mayo Clinic. However, the therapy is best used when the stretch marks are fairly recent; the procedure may not be effective on older striae. Pulsed dye laser therapy, unlike some other types of laser surgery, does not injure the skin itself. Instead, the laser remodels the dermis underneath the top layer of your skin. The treatment, when done properly, reportedly also promotes the growth of collagen and elastin to help smooth out those unwanted marks.
Fractional photothermolysis is similar to pulsed dye laser therapy in its efficacy of removing stretch marks, according to the Mayo Clinic. However, fractional photothermolysis does cause some mild injuries to the skin; this is medically called partial damage and occurs to small dot-like areas within the treatment region of the body. However, the skin reportedly heals quickly in most cases even though there was indeed fractional damage to selected areas beyond those of the stretch marks.
Microdermabrasion is another type of cosmetic surgery used to eliminate the presence of striae, according to the Mayo Clinic. If you opt for this method of surgical stretch mark removal, a qualified medical professional will use a hand-held device that blows crystals onto your skin. The crystals are said to refine the treatment area. The aim is to safely remove the skin’s outermost layer with as little pain and trauma as possible. Microdermabrasion may be an effective option for older stretch marks.
The excimer laser can also be used to remove older stretch marks, according to the Mayo Clinic. The primary aim of the laser is to stimulate the growth of melanin. When the surgery works, the new melanin helps the older stretch marks become much closer in color to your existing skin tone.