Resting laptop on your thighs can lead to ‘toasted skin syndrome’October 13th, 2010 | Posted by in Computer | Health
Do you always use your laptop on your lap? I always find the habit to sit on a couch or on my bed and work with my laptop for long hours but not directly resting it on my lap. Instead, I put my custom-made board on top of my lap. The board has two padded cushions on the bottom to protect my thighs. It also has grip pad on the surface and is wide enough for my 15″ laptop and mouse pad on the right side.
To anyone who constantly uses their laptop placed directly on their lap – Beware!
Medical reports indicate that long-term use of laptops on their thigh may consider changing their habit. This may lead to “toasted skin syndrome” – a result of prolonged exposure to high temperatures resulting in blotchy skin condition.
In a recent case, a sponge-patterned skin discoloration was developed on a twelve-year-old boy’s left thigh after playing computer games a few hours every day for several months.
“He recognized that the left side of the laptop got hot, but did not pay attention to it and maintained its position,” Swiss researchers reported on Monday in an article published in “Pediatrics” magazine.
In another case, a law student in Virginia also sought treatment due to patchy discoloration on her leg.
Doctors who are responsible for treating the girl’s legs was so confused at first, until they learned that the student always use her laptop without support in her thighs for about six hours a day.
Journal of medicine reported that case as one of the ten laptop-related cases in the past 6 years from 2007.
Excessive use of electric blankets and other heat sources are usually not hot enough to cause burns. In general, this situation may not affect health, but will lead to permanent skin darkening. In rare cases, it can cause damage that can lead to skin cancer, said the Swiss researchers. Although, they did not point out that laptop use can cause skin cancer, but for safety considerations, it is recommended that people using laptops should place a portable case under the laptop or padded cushion.
Long term skin inflammation can posibbly increase the risk for squamous cell carcinoma, a skin cancer which is more aggressive than other types of skin cancer. The doctors said that laptop use is unlikely to lead to skin cancer but without taking precautions, it could damage skin if the prolonged close skin contact with laptops could not be avoided.