Rosacea

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A chronic skin and eye condition, rosacea’s symptoms include redness and pimples in the early stages and thickened skin and sometimes an enlarged nose in the advanced stages. People with this condition experience frequent facial flushing, accompanied by swelling or burning. Although dermatologists are still exploring the cause for this condition, it is clear that the blood vessels in afflicted people dilate far more easily than normal, which stimulates many of the symptoms. When rosacea affects the eyes, people experience dryness, itching, burning sensations and swelling in and around their eyes. Some also complain of light sensitivity and blurred vision. In most cases, outbreaks of rosacea occur around the facial areas. Many doctors believe that heat exposure, strenuous exercise, stress, alcohol consumption and spicy foods may all contribute to increased redness.

Who is at risk for developing rosacea?

Rosacea is probably more common than you think. Approximately 14 million people in the United States have rosacea. Patients who are more at-risk for this condition are:

  • Between 30 and 50 years old
  • Fair-skinned, typically with blond hair and blue eyes
  • Have Celtic or Scandinavian ancestry
  • Have a family history of rosacea
  • Have had many acne cysts

While these are the most common candidates for rosacea, it can occur in any patient – any age, gender or race.

How do you treat rosacea?

Rosacea has no cure, but a variety of treatments are available. Treatments are intended to control outbreaks, and they are also intended to improve physical appearance. Antibiotics are generally used to regulate the condition. Laser surgery or electro-surgery options are available for more severe cases.