Diastasis recti, a normal condition in newborns, is a separation of the left and right side of the rectus abdominis muscle, which is the muscle covering the front surface of the abdomen. A diastasis recti is seen as a large ridge running down the midline of the abdomen from the bottom of the breastbone to the navel which appears whenever an infant strains or attempts to sit up.
Review Date: 4/5/2015
Reviewed By: Debra G. Wechter, MD, FACS, General Surgery practice specializing in breast cancer, Virginia Mason Medical Center, Seattle, WA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Isla Ogilvie, PhD, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.