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 [stri´ah] (pl. stri´ae) (L.)
1. a band, line, streak, or stripe.
2. in anatomic nomenclature, a longitudinal collection of nerve fibers in the brain.
atrophic striae (stri´ae atro´phicae) atrophic, pinkish or purplish, scarlike lesions, later becoming white (lineae albicantes), on the breasts, thighs, abdomen, and buttocks, due to weakening of elastic tissues, associated with pregnancy (striae gravidarum), overweight, rapid growth during puberty and adolescence, Cushing's syndrome, and topical or prolonged treatment with corticosteroids.
stria diagona´lis (Broca) a band of nerve fibers that forms the caudal zone of the anterior perforated substance where it adjoins the optic tract.
stri´ae gravida´rum striae atrophicae occurring in pregnancy.
Striae gravidarum: linear tears that may occur in the connective tissue. From Gorrie et al., 1994.
stri´ae medulla´res bundles of white fibers across the floor of the fourth ventricle.
Miller-Keane Encyclopedia and Dictionary of Medicine, Nursing, and Allied Health, Seventh Edition. © 2003 by Saunders, an imprint of Elsevier, Inc. All rights reserved.


(stri'a) (stri'e) plural.striae [L., stria, furrow]
A line, stripe, ridge, or thin band that is visible because it contrasts with the surrounding tissue. It may be elevated or of a different color or texture. See: streak

striae acusticae

Horizontal white stripes on the floor of the fourth ventricle of the brain.
Enlarge picture
STRIA ATROPHICA: Abdomen of a gravid woman at term

stria atrophica

A fine pinkish-white or gray line, usually 14 cm long, seen in parts of the body where skin has been stretched. It is commonly seen on thighs, abdomen, and breasts of women who are or have been pregnant; in those whose skin has been stretched by obesity, tumor, or edema; or in people who have taken adrenocortical hormones for a prolonged period. Synonym: stretch mark; stria gravidarum See: illustration

striae gravidarum

Stria atrophica.

stria longitudinalis lateralis

Any of the longitudinal bands of gray matter, slightly elevated on the upper part of the corpus callosum.

stria medullaris

A thin axon tract that originates in the septal nuclei, the hypothalamus, and the anterior thalamic nucleus and synapses in the habenular nuclei of the epithalamus. It is part of the limbic system.
Synonym: stria medullaris thalami See: limbic system for illus

stria medullaris thalami

Stria medullaris.

olfactory stria

Any of three bands of fibers (lateral, intermediate, and medial) that form the roots of the olfactory tract. As it reaches the olfactory areas of the cortex on the undersurface of the brain, the olfactory tract splits into two visible ridges, a large lateral and a small medial stria.

stria of Retzius

See: Retzius, Magnus Gustaf

stria terminalis

An axon tract that originates in the amygdala and synapses in the hypothalamus. It is a slender, compact tract that curves over the thalamus, arching along the medial surface of the caudate nucleus (below the fornix), and terminates in the anterior hypothalamus. It is part of the limbic system.
See: limbic system for illus
Medical Dictionary, © 2009 Farlex and Partners


Broad, purplish, shiny or whitish lines of atrophy on the skin, most commonly affecting pregnant women, and occurring on the abdomen, breasts or thighs. Striae are due to altered COLLAGEN. Also known as stretch marks.
Collins Dictionary of Medicine © Robert M. Youngson 2004, 2005

Patient discussion about striae

Q. How to prevent Stretch Marks? I am pregnant and am starting to get Stretch Marks. How can I stop them?

A. Stretch Marks are hereditary and some women get it while others don't. There are special creams out there in order to prevent stretch marks, however I recommend you take a good moisturizing cream and rub it on your stomach and anywhere else that you need to, every night after the bath.

Q. I want to know why do all pregnant woman get stretch marks and how to treat them? I have given birth to a baby boy recently….it is joyous time on Christmas Eve. This is my second baby. During my previous delivery I didn’t get any stretch mark but now. I want to know why do all pregnant woman get stretch marks and how to treat them?

A. not all women get stretchmarks during pregnancy. some women get them without being pregnant.

Q. Are these stretch marks very common and how to avoid them? I mean which cream to be used? I am in my 8 th month. Everything is going good. Just a worry came when I saw one woman having stretch marks. Are these stretch marks very common and how to avoid them? I mean which cream to be used?

A. Hi , this is my 2nd baby. During the last pregnancy I had stretch marks. I have seen some ladies, who do not have at all. I met one woman with 4 children she did not have any. One of my friend; had in the very first pregnancy. There are creams available for use by pregnant woman before and after pregnancy to avoid stretch marks altogether.

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References in periodicals archive ?
Wickham striae are a pathognomonic sign of LP and histologically represent the focal thickening of the granular layer of the epidermis.
Striae gravidarum (SG, also called' striae distensae') is a common condition observed in pregnancy to various extents.
Caption: Figure 1: He had a moon face appearance with truncal obesity, buffalo hump, hypertrichosis in trunk, and purple striae in the axilla, periumbilical, and inguinal region.
Multiple violaceous, atrophic, vertical linear striae were noted affecting the axillae and proximal arms (Figure 1).
Rosenthal (18) proposed four aetiological mechanisms of striae formation: insufficient development of tegument, including elastic properties deficiency; rapid stretching of the skin; endocrinal changes; and other causes, possibly toxic.
She was initially admitted to the psychosomatic ward where her physical examination revealed a moon face, exophthalmos (abnormally protruding eyeballs), central adiposity, and purple striae on her legs.
Topical tretinoin therapy for management of early striae. Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, 39(2 pt 3)S90-S92.
Psoriasis vulgaris presents with vascular changes like dotted vessels, red dots and light red background and lichen planus presents with characteristic Wikham's striae, grey-blue background on dermoscopy.