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Sesame oil for prevention and management of stretch marks during pregnancy

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eMediNexus    03 May 2018

Striae gravidarum, or stretch marks, commonly occur during pregnancy.1 These atrophic linear scars initially present as flat, pink-to-red bands, known as striae rubra or immature striae that may become raised, longer, wider, and violet-red. Eventually, the marks grow faint and become hypopigmented, called as striae alba or mature striae, appearing as scar-like, wrinkled, white, and atrophic marks. There may be associated itching, burning, and discomfort.2

Sesame oil, or Sesamum indicum, is a potential herb that can be used in the form of oil to prevent and manage stretch marks during pregnancy. A triple-blind randomized controlled trial evaluated the effect of sesame, sweet almond, and their combination oil on prevention of striae (primary outcome) in primiparous females. At 35 to 38 weeks of pregnancy, striae were observed in 59.2%, 16.7%, 14% and 82% of women in sweet almond, sesame, sesame and sweet almond oil and control groups, respectively. The occurrence risk of striae was thus noted to be significantly reduced in the sesame, sweet almond, and sesame and sweet almond oil groups, compared with the control group. Abdominal itching was significantly different among users of sweet almond (65.3%), sesame (10.5%), sesame and sweet almond oil (44%), and control groups (78%). Sesame oil group did not experience severe and very severe form of itching; however, it was noted in 34.7% women in the almond oil group. Sesame oil thus seems to be effective in the prevention of striae and in reducing associated itching.3 Another study evaluated the preventive and curative effect of oil prepared from Pongamia pinnata leaves in Sesamum indicum oil on striae gravidarum. Fifty randomly selected pregnant women were segregated into two groups: Group-A (preventive) and Group-B (curative). The oil was applied for 3 months from 4th to 7th months of pregnancy. In the preventive group, 98% of cases did not develop striae gravidarum while in curative group, symptoms like itching and burning sensation were cured in first follow-up after 15 days and without recurrence.4

Sesame oil thus has proven efficacy in preventing and managing stretch marks.

References

  1. Korgavkar K, Wang F. Stretch marks during pregnancy: a review of topical prevention. Br J Dermatol. 2015 Mar;172(3):606-15.
  2. Farahnik B, Park K, Kroumpouzos G, Murase J. Striae gravidarum: Risk factors, prevention, and management. International Journal of Women’s Dermatology 2017;3(2):77-85.
  3. Malakouti J, Khalili AF, Kamrani A. Sesame, Sweet Almond & Sesame and Sweet Almond Oil for the Prevention of Striae in Primiparous Females: A Triple-Blind Randomized Controlled Trial. Iran Red Crescent Med J. 2017 June;19(6):e33672.
  4. Kumar V, Gupta S, Sinha M. Clinical efficacy of Karanja Patra Siddha taila in Kikkisa W.S.R. striae gravidarum. World Journal of Pharmaceutical Research 2015;4(4):1528-36.

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