Rosacea is a common skin condition that mainly affects the face. It causes redness and small, reddish, pus-filled bumps on the face. Rosacea is a long-term condition, and although it affects the skin, at times, it may affect the eyes too. Its signs and symptoms tend to flare up for a couple of weeks to months before diminishing, and then flaring up again. Most of the cases are mild, and the spots can be cleared using an antibiotic treatment.
The symptoms of rosacea are mainly seen on the central part of face, particularly the forehead, nose, cheeks, and around the chin or mouth. Sometimes, the skin on part of head may also be affected. If you experience redness of the face and it persists for a long time, consider seeking a doctor. In rare cases, an individual may develop rosacea on the skin of the back and arms. Among the signs and symptoms of rosacea are the following.
- Facial redness or flushing
- Small red lines found under skin
- Thick skin on forehead, cheeks, and chin
- Enlarged Or swollen nose
- Eye problems including red, dry, itchy eyes
- Vision problems
- Swollen red bumps that resemble acne
The exact cause for rosacea is not known but a number of factors have been linked to its occurrence. Abnormality in blood vessels found in the face or reaction to microscopic mites that are present on facial skin can make rosacea to develop. The suggested factors can worsen the symptoms of rosacea and cause a lot of discomfort. Below is a list of possible factors that can trigger rosacea flare-ups.
- Abnormal immune reaction in skin
- Demodex folliculorum, a type of tiny mite that harmlessly lives on skin
- Tiny blood vessels that might become leaky
- Exposure to sunlight
- Certain food like spicy foods
- Hot drinks
- Strenuous exercise
- Hot or cold weather
There may be no specific investigations done for rosacea diagnosis, and much of the screening is by typical symptoms. However, sometimes, a doctor may conduct tests including a blood sample analysis to rule out other problems likely to cause redness on the skin, for example, systemic lupus erythematosus. Doctors rely on the history of patients’ symptoms and the physical examination of the skin to find out if it is a case of rosacea. Since symptoms of rosacea might resemble those of other skin conditions like psoriasis, acne, lupus, or eczema, doctors may also consider conducting more investigations.
While there is no permanent cure for rosacea, its symptoms can be managed with various treatments. Treatment procedures are aimed at easing the symptoms. Mild rosacea might not necessarily need treatment especially if an individual is not bothered or the quality of life is not affected. However, more serious cases of rosacea often require treatment. Patients who have rosacea are advised to seek help of a dermatologist to get proper evaluation so that the right treatment regime is identified. A combination of treatment approaches may be used in case of more resistant forms of rosacea, including the use of oral antibiotics, antibacterial cream products, and prescription sulfa antibiotics.