How to Treat Toasted Skin Syndrome at Home

toasted skin syndrome

Toasted skin syndrome is a local name for Erythema ab igne which is a rash that develops as a result of prolonged or repeated exposure to low levels of heat. Long-term heat exposure can damage the skin’s superficial blood vessels, resulting in a web-like pattern of redness or hyperpigmentation on the exposed area that may resemble a network of veins.

The pattern is what distinguishes it. It literally looks like a net, which is unusual for someone to see on their own skin.

People used to have to stand close to wood-fired stoves and fires to stay warm, and Erythema ab igne was fairly common.

The cases of the condition began to decrease as central heating became more common, and now the most common cause is the use of heating pads, space heaters, and laptop computers. Wrapping yourself in a heated blanket and sitting in a heated car seat for an extended period of time can also cause Erythema ab igne. As you read on, you will gain a thorough understanding of it and how to treat it at home.

What is toasted skin syndrome?

Toasted skin syndrome is the more common name for erythema ab igne, a medical condition. Erythema ab igne, which literally means “redness from fire” in Latin, causes a blotchy, crisscross rash that is usually brown or red in color. The rash may be itchy or have a burning sensation.

The exact mechanism of damage is unknown, but prolonged heat exposure is thought to cause changes in the skin’s elastic fibers and microscopic blood vessels near the skin’s surface. Before consulting a professional, you can use one of the most popular skincare brands to provide a quick solution for this condition.

Why do I have toasted skin syndrome?

Toasted skin syndrome is commonly caused by prolonged exposure to low flame, such as from a hot water bottle on your stomach or standing too close to a portable heater.

It’s crucial to remember that this isn’t a burn because the heat sources aren’t hot enough to burn the skin. Erythema ab igne, on the other hand, is a hyperpigmented rash caused by low-level heat exposure.

Due to regular heat exposure from hot water bottles to help manage painful symptoms, it is also important to note that many women who experience Erythema ab ignealso suffer from conditions such as IBS and endometriosis.

Toasted skin syndrome symptoms cause

Toasted skin syndrome is a result of a variety of modern-day factors, but it has existed for much longer than you might assume.

Items that caused skin irritation when the syndrome was first discovered included wood-burning stoves and working with hot coals.

Coal miners and chefs who were exposed to heat sources like these for an extended period of time frequently developed toasted skin syndrome on their faces.

Modern causes of Erythema ab igne differ slightly.

Common current causes include:

  • Prolonged laptop use on the thighs
  • Seat heaters in automobiles
  • Hot water bottles
  • Space heaters

Prolonged laptop use on the thighs

This is usually visible on the left thigh because most laptop batteries and vents are located on the left side of the device. This is likely to become more common as remote work becomes more popular.

Seat heaters in automobiles

There have been reports of people who use their seat heaters for 2 to 4 hours at a time becoming ill. So, it’s wise that you reduce the level of your usage of it to avoid it happening to you. After each long drive, you can wipe your face with any of the best face toners for healthy skin to reduce the risk of getting this disorder in your face.

Hot water bottles

While these are effective at relieving abdominal pain, there have been reports of Erythema ab igne after prolonged use.

Space heaters

Traditionally, toasted skin syndrome was found in elderly people who spent a significant amount of time in front of radiators or space heaters.

Toasted skin syndrome treatment

As of now, no specific treatment methods for Erythema ab igne are available. Nevertheless, there are things that can be done to help alleviate the symptoms.

Remove the source of the problem

The best way to avoid further irritation is to eliminate all potential heat sources. It aids in the removal of rash marks and hyperpigmentation. Though the rashes usually go away after removing the heat source, they have the potential to become permanent.

Ignoring habits such as placing your laptop on your bare lap reduces the risk. People who work in jobs that require a lot of heat can try to avoid it by wearing protective clothing or gear.

If you have a mild burn with unbroken skin, it is critical to cool the burn immediately. For about 10 minutes, run cool (not cold) water over the affected area.

Apply topical medication

Using topical medications to treat the illnesses of toasted skin syndrome can help. Consult a dermatologist to determine which is best for your specific situation.

Dermatologists typically prescribe the following medications for symptom relief in cases of toasted skin syndrome:


Hydroquinone is used to brighten up the skin. It lightens hyperpigmentation skin conditions such as melasma, liver spots, age spots, freckles, and toasted skin syndrome by bleaching the skin. When someone applies hydroquinone to their skin, it reduces the number of melanocytes, which signifies that the body generates less melanin in the treated area, lightening it for up to four weeks.


A topical cream or gel that is prescribed to treat acne, sun-damaged skin, and fine wrinkles. Tretinoin, like hydroquinone, can assist fade dark spots by decreasing the amount of melanin in your skin cells, allowing you to have a more even skin tone. However, it may take 3-4 months or up to 6 months to see an optimum performance.


A chemotherapy operative that, when applied topically to the skin, aids in the treatment of precancerous and cancerous skin growths by inhibiting the growth of the abnormal cells that cause the skin condition. Several studies have shown that it can help destroy the atypical cells that cause the reticulated rash.


Flavonoids are a type of plant metabolite that has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Topical flavonoids may help to reduce sunburn, aging, cancerous changes, and other skin damage caused by UV light or heat exposure. It also acts as a “sunscreen” for the skin, devouring UVR before it interacts with and damages cellular components.

How to Treat Toasted Skin Syndrome at Home

While it can be treated at home, it is best to seek medical attention if you suspect you have it. To prevent further damage, the most important step is to turn off the heat source. This usually results in the discoloration disappearing.

Even if it goes away on its own, it’s worth consulting a doctor or dermatologist because it can increase your risk of certain skin cancers.


Toasted skin syndrome is due to prolonged skin heat exposure, typically from heat sources such as laptop batteries, space heaters, or heating pads.

These heating elements can cause changes in your skin’s cells and fibers, resulting in skin discoloration.

These skin cell changes can sometimes progress to cancer. Treatment entails removing the source of the irritation as well as applying medications to the skin to relieve the irritation.

If you notice any changes in your skin, especially after applying a heat source, you should consult a doctor to rule out any more severe symptoms.

FAQs About Toasted Skin Syndrome

Is toasted skin syndrome permanent?

While it often resolves within weeks to months of removing the heat source, it has the potential to become permanent and, in some cases, transform into cutaneous malignancies. Both patients and providers should be aware of the link between this rash and repeated heat exposure.

Is toasted skin syndrome dangerous?

Toasted skin syndrome occurs when your legs are exposed to high temperatures for extended periods of time. It is not usually a life-threatening condition, but it has been linked to cancer. While there is no cure, there are some things you can do to help reverse toasted skin syndrome in its early stages.

What is toasted skin syndrome?

Toasted skin syndrome is the more common name for erythema ab igne, a medical condition. Toasted skin syndrome, which literally means “redness from fire” in Latin, causes a blotchy, crisscross rash that is usually brown or red in color.

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