Laptop Heat Can Damage Skin

Kind of puts a damper on the phrase “laptop,” huh? Scientists say a condition called “toasted skin syndrome” can develop in people who regularly balance their laptop on their thighs. In one case, a 12-year-old boy developed a sponge-patterned skin discoloration on his thigh after playing computer games for several hours, and in another case, an American law student developed mottled discoloration on her leg after spending an average of six hours a day with the computer on her lap. Doctors said the computer reached a temperature of 126 degrees, and caused damage equal to extreme sun exposure. Although the condition is usually harmless, it can cause permanent skin darkening or even cancer in some rare cases, researchers said. "Toasted skin condition" had previously been associated with bakers, silversmiths, and other people who spent many hours a day exposed to extreme heat.