Rosacea is a chronic inflammatory skin condition that affects more than 14 million Americans of all ages and is particularly common in fair skin types. It is often referred to as “acne rosacea” because rosacea may cause small, red pustules that resemble acne, however the two conditions are not the same. Many patients refer to rosacea as "adult acne."
Rosacea affects everyone differently, and while most people who suffer from this condition experience rosacea symptoms on their face (especially the nose, chin, cheeks, and forehead), others may show rosacea symptoms on their ears, neck, chest, back or eyes.
Common rosacea symptoms include:
Frequent episodes of flushing or blushing
Visibility of small blood vessels
Persistent skin redness
Small, red bumps that may be solid or pus-filled and resemble acne
Skin irritation, including burning, stinging or itching sensations
Skin thickening (e.g. rhinophyma)
Rough skin plaques, or areas of raised red skin
Skin swelling and inflammation
Watery, bloodshot eyes (ocular rosacea)
There are four different stages of rosacea (pre-rosacea, mild, moderate and severe), and symptoms may vary depending on the stage. Additionally, rosacea symptoms may also vary depending on the subtype of rosacea you are experiencing.
Types of Rosacea
Erythematotelangiectatic Rosacea – Characterized by patchy facial redness, especially on the forehead, chin, cheeks and nose.
Papulopustular Rosacea – Characterized by presence of papules or pustules resembling acne
Phymatous Rosacea – Characterized by severe skin thickening that can lead to significant skin texture irregularities and facial deformation, such as rhinophyma or development of a bulbous nose.
Ocular Rosacea – Characterized by frequently watery or bloodshot eyes that are dry, irritated and tend to sting, burn or itch.
Rosacea Causes & Triggers
The exact cause of rosacea is unknown, however the medical community suspects heredity may be a primary factor in determining your risk of developing rosacea. Aside from genetics, other potential rosacea causes include genetic predisposition combined with sun exposure and medications that result in blood vessel dilation, as well as a particular mite found in hair follicles (Demodex folliculorum).
Triggers are circumstances or stimuli that cause rosacea symptoms to occur. Common rosacea triggers include
lack of sleep
warm/hot temperature foods
skin care products
There is no known cure for rosacea, however popular treatment options include:
Topical medications are often prescribed to treat rosacea:
azelaic acid (Finacea Gel)
Oral medications include
Laser treatments can also be helpful.
Would you like to learn more about Rosacea Treatment? Call us to schedule a consultation at Clovis Dermatology.