Rosacea is a very common condition that mostly affects the central face (nose, cheeks, and chin) but sometimes can cause ear and eye problems. It has several presentations, with the most obvious being persistent redness and flushing of the cheeks. Occasionally, pimple-like bumps can be the only manifestation or in combination with the background redness. Rhinophyma, or rosacea of the nose, occurs mostly in older men, while eye involvement (Ocular Rosacea) presents as redness, sensitivity and irritation of the eyes.
At Michigan Dermatology Institute, your rosacea is as important to us as it is to you. Fortunately, it is not a life threatening condition, but it does cause significant psychosocial distress. Knowing the signs/symptoms of rosacea is crucial to help prevent the worsening and more noticeable signs of the disease. The earlier the treatment, the better chance of gaining control over this.
Q: If I had rosacea, what kinds of symptoms would I have?
A: On the skin, dryness, stinging or burning are common symptoms rosacea sufferers endorse. Sensitivity and flushing are other features often occurring in patients along with inflammatory lesions, in particular to sun, wind, foods and stress. The eyes can develop styes and inflammation, along with sensations of a foreign body, itching, pain, burning and/or dryness. A non-specific sign of eye involvement includes the inability to wear contact lenses.
Q: Are there certain things I can do to help with my rosacea?
A: Learning and avoiding your triggers is the best thing you can do to help control your rosacea. Common triggers include temperature and weather changes, certain beverages and foods, exercise, skin care products, medical conditions, medications and emotional fluctuations. There are several dedicated websites available to learn more about these triggers.
Q: What treatments are available?
A: Effective treatment involves a customized plan depending on the type of rosacea, extent of disease and patient/provider preferences. Each plan involves avoiding triggers, but many times this is not realistic, so medical treatments are usually implemented. Over-the-counter therapeutics (sunscreen, green-tinted make-up, etc), medical therapies (topical and oral therapies) along with laser treatments (“red” lasers) encompass the treatment spectrum and we will make a thorough plan with you at your evaluation.