Can Stretch Marks be Removed By Lasers?

Q: Dr. Eppley, Hello, I am inquiring about laser surgery stretch mark removal. I have abdominal stretch marks just above and below the belly button due to pregnancy and I wanted to know what could possibly be done about this. I would also want information on pricing. Thanks very much!

A:  Thank you for your inquiry. As much as I would like to tell you that ‘laser stretch mark removal’ is a real entity, it is not. Lasers can be used to treat stretch marks and there may be some improvement, but the concept of complete removal of their appearance is not currently possible. Stretch marks represensent partial tears in the dermis of the skin and, once such injured, the skin can never be restored to normal skin again. It is not possible to regenerate the lost thickness of the dermis which is why they are wide and somewhat depressed. I would need to see some pictures of your periumbilical area to see if laser treatments would be of any benefit at all.

Dr. Barry Eppley