Striae Distensae after Breast Augmentation: Treatment Using the Nonablative Fractionated 1550-nm Erbium Glass Laser

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Abstract

Background:

Stretch marks, or striae distensae, are dermal scars and result in considerable aesthetic concern. The responsible factors for their development are poorly understood. Development of striae distensae is a rare complication after breast augmentation. Successfully treating striae distensae has always been challenging. Lasers and light devices have recently become a good therapeutic option. The fractional laser has shown encouraging results with less risk of pigmentation in the treatment of recent stretch marks.

Methods:

Forty-seven patients underwent breast augmentation over a period of 2 months; of these, 10 patients developed new striae distensae. They were submitted to nonablative fractionated 1550-nm erbium glass laser treatment. Response was assessed from photographs obtained before and 4 weeks after the end of treatment. Two plastic surgeons analyzed improvements clinically and photographically, and a patient satisfaction score was recorded as well.

Results:

There was a significant relationship between age and development of striae, (p = 0.003), but there was no significant relationship between striae distensae and nulliparity (p = 0.147), volume of the silicone implant (p = 0.892), or use of oral contraceptive (p = 1.00). The scores achieved by both the evaluators and the patients were high, with 50 percent of them between 9 and 10 (maximum scores), and with a high index of satisfaction with the treatment.

Conclusions:

Age is statistically significant in the development of striae distensae after breast augmentation. This report demonstrates excellent patient and plastic surgeon satisfaction after treatment. The use of fractional photothermolysis is a good treatment modality for striae rubrae.

CLINICAL QUESTION/LEVEL OF EVIDENCE:

Risk, IV.

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