- Livedo reticularis
- Cholesterol emboli
- Erythema ab igne
- Systemic lupus erythematosus
This patient was diagnosed with erythema ab igne (literally, in Latin, redness from fire), a hyperpigmentation disorder caused by long-term exposure to heat. The most common sources include hot water bottles, electric blankets, and even laptop computers.
- Although actual burns do not occur from the heat source in erythema ab igne, the skin develops a course pigmentation that appears as patches that are pink, purple, and eventually brown
- Pruritus or mild burning paresthesias may occur
- Resultant pigmentation changes can be permanent; there is no effective treatment
Pearls for Urgent Care Management and Considerations for Transfer
- Caution the patient to avoid prolonged exposure to the heat source
- Follow-up with a dermatologist is warranted to establish a new “baseline” against which future changes in pigmentation can be measured, in the interest of vigilance for cutaneous malignancies
Acknowledgment: Images courtesy of VisualDx.