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Toasted Skin Syndrome: cooler weather increases chance for heat-related skin ailment

Toasted Skin Syndrome is a skin rash caused by over-exposure to heat sources like laptops, space heaters, seat warmers, and even cell phones.
Published: Sep. 30, 2020 at 2:30 PM EDT
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TOLEDO, Ohio (WTVG) - Cooler temps have officially made their way into the region this week, but with the change of seasons comes a little-known condition that might leave you disfigured and uncomfortable.

“It has a fancy name Erythema Ab Igne, explains Dr. Joel Kahn. "Erythema means redness, although it’s very often dark brown. And igne, like ignite, means fire or heat. It’s a heat-related rash that you might be able to get to go away but you’re better off preventing.”

Kahn is talking about Toasted Skin Syndrome. It’s a skin rash caused by over-exposure to heat sources like laptops, space heaters, seat warmers, and even something we carry in our pockets every day.

“I’ve had an issue where my phone flashlight would constantly turn on and it burns my legs,” says Toledo resident Glen Thomas.

Dr. Kahn says the condition -- which used to be called Hot Water Bottle Rash -- causes affected skin to get dark, giving it a similar appearance to burnt toast. The discoloration can be permanent. He says it’s important to limit your time with heat sources to keep your skin healthy.

“Maybe the room heater needs to be two feet away and maybe the laptop needs to be on some sort of desk even if you’re sitting on the couch,” he says.

Copyright 2020 WTVG. All rights reserved.

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