Influence of thermal properties and epidermal thickness on pain threshold in conductive heating

  • A. M. Stoll
  • M. A. Chianta
  • J. R. Piergallini


Measurements of time to pain threshold during contact of bare skin with materials at various increased temperatures were made to provide maximum permissible temperatures for safe contact in given circumstances, determinable solely from a knowledge of the thermal properties of the material. The profound influence of epidermal thickness on the heat flow during contact led to a method for determining this thickness, given the initial temperature of the material productive of threshold pain within the first five seconds of contact.

We concluded that the system used in deriving the data is valid, the epidermal thickness may be determined within ± 10%, and a simple method for performing this measurement may be developed from the present data.


Pain Threshold Thermal Inertia Epidermal Thickness Good Insulator Conductive Heating 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Stoll, A. M. (1977). Thermal properties of human skin related to nondestructive measurement of epidermal thickness. J. Invest. Dermatol., 69, 328PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Stoll, A. M., Chianta, M. A. and Piergallini, J. R. (1979). Thermal Conduction Effects in Human Skin: II. Experimental validation and application of data in selection of materials. Phase Report No. NADC-79034–60Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Stoll, A. M., Piergallini, J. R. and Chianta, M. A. (1979). Thermal Conduction Effects in Human Skin: III. Influence of epidermal thickness and exposure time. Phase Report No. NADC-79035- 60Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Wu, Y-C. (1972). Material properties criteria for thermal safety. J. Materials, JMLSA,7, 573Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Stoll, A. M. and Greene, L. C. (1959). Relationship between pain and tissue damage due to thermal radiation. J. Appl. Physiol.. 14, 373PubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© MTP Press Limited 1981

Authors and Affiliations

  • A. M. Stoll
  • M. A. Chianta
  • J. R. Piergallini

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations