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Skin Care and Diseases

Swelling with sunburn



My 20 yr old daughter had significant sun exposure this weekend, with overall sunburn. Now her forehead is swollen (not individual blisters, but more overall). is this sun poisoning? Treatment? Cause for concern? Should she see a doctor? She says it is not painful.


Part of the skin's response to excessive sun exposure is edema or an accumulation of fluid in the skin. If your daughter received a lot of exposure on her forehead (a common site), then the fluid build-up is a natural response. It should resolve by itself within 24-48 hours. If it doesn't, a trip to your doctor would be the next step.

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Response by:

Tatiana M Oberyszyn, PhD Tatiana M Oberyszyn, PhD
Associate Professor of Pathology
Associate Professor of Molecular Virology, Immunology & Medical Genetics
College of Medicine
The Ohio State University