IR Thermography Proves Useful for Dermatology and Aesthetic Medicine

infrared thermography
Image taken with Flir T420 infra red camera. Each color represents different temperatures, as is shown on spectrum scale on right side of image.
The utility of infrared (IR) thermography for dermatologic and aesthetic applications is reviewed.

Infrared (IR) thermography imaging provides a noninvasive, effective tool to diagnose and manage skin disorders and to monitor cosmetic procedures, according to findings from a bibliographic survey recently published in the Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology.

This survey included 29 relevant studies published from 2005 to 2021 that focused on the benefits and applications of IR thermography for dermatology, cosmetic procedures, and inflammatory skin diseases. Patients included those with psoriasis, acne vulgaris, hidradenitis suppurativa, systemic sclerosis (scleroderma) and localized scleroderma, burns, gynoid hydrolipodystrophy, nail and hair changes, and aesthetics.

The inflammatory skin disorders included in this survey produce temperature gradients that appear in IR thermography images. By performing repeated measurements over time, it is possible to quantify treatment effects and monitor changes on the skin, the researchers explained. IR thermography is noninvasive and can assess depth, severity, and the need for surgery across various conditions, according to the researchers.

The study authors concluded, “Thermography can be very useful in scientific studies related to the skin science, considering that it is a reliable, noninvasive, and very safe method for measuring skin temperature.” They indicated that it allows for “the diagnosis and monitoring of symptoms of several skin disorders and conditions…[and] can be used as a parameter for evaluating the effectiveness of different cosmetic products.”


Vergilio MM, Gomes G, Aiello LM, et al. Evaluation of skin using infrared thermal imaging for dermatology and aesthetic applications Published online January 18, 2022. J Cosmet Dermatol. doi:10.1111/jocd.14748