Keep your legs looking great by following some simple tips that will help reduce your risk of developing Toasted Skin Syndrome.
You probably know that too much exposure to the sun can damage your skin, but were you aware that skin problems can also be caused by your laptop? The net-looking pigmentation of the skin is known as erythema ab igne in the medical community, and toasted skin syndrome in layman’s terms. The discoloration of the skin happens because of thermal radiation delivered when you repeatedly rest a laptop on your bare skin.
Before the days when technology was so prevalent, the only way this type of skin damage occurred was due to standing next to fires or stoves that were hot, but not enough to cause an immediate burn. Historically, the blame for such skin damage was laid at the feet or more traditional heat sources, as it really does take a lot of exposure to such levels of heat in order for the discoloration to become evident. It has only been in recent years that physicians have been seeing the skin issues start to appear on those who were not exposed to open flames or stoves, but who did have repeated exposure to electronic devices such as laptops. The recent upswing in such cases has seen literary documentation start to be released concerning the appearance of red or dark splotches on the skin caused by exposure to low-grade heat.
The recent emergence of this skin problem means that the medical community is still not entirely sure of the mechanism by which radiation can deliver the damage. The initial belief is that the exposure to heat causes the superficial blood vessels to become damaged. As such, it is believed that hemosiderin, an iron storage complex that occurs naturally in cells, becomes dilated and deposed. This leaves a net-like appearance on the skin that is not entirely pretty. The original red lesion will continue to darken over time as the skin is continually exposed to more and more heat. For the most part, there are no other symptoms other than the unpleasant darkening of the skin. In extreme cases, though, some sufferers feel a severe itching or burning in the affected area.
You would think that people would notice a major change in their skin condition, but the fact is that erythema ab igne takes time to develop and become visible. An example of how it all works can be found in the case study of a 21-year old woman who went to her doctor because she noticed problems with her thighs. There had been no prior issues, and no need for medication, She just happened to look at her thighs one day and notice the net-like hyperpigmentation of the skin. Simple observations showed that the issue was more prominent on the left side of the thigh than on the right.
The positioning of the skin discoloration for perfectly with the positioning of her laptop when it was resting on her thighs. The patient in question was a college student who would spend extended periods of time with the laptop sitting on her thighs as she studied.
She was submitted to a number of different evaluations from doctors, as they took a look at the pattern and positioning of the discoloration. They asked about her behaviors, her previous medical history, as well as other factors in an attempt to find an answer. The girl had no other skin issues in her past, and was not taking medication that might lead to this type of side effect. The biggest factor proved to be her laptop use, which was led to doctors confirming that it was indeed toasted skin syndrome.