Rosacea is an inflammatory skin condition that commonly affects females of ages 30 to 50 years old. Its exact cause is not known, but experts say there is a definite involvement with genetic factors due to the fact that rosacea is seen to run in families. Several other researchers have found links between rosacea and other autoimmune diseases that are known to be genetically-linked.
Rosacea and other autoimmune diseases
A study was carried out by a group of researchers led by Alexander Egeberg of the University of Copenhagen. It involved two groups of patients who were matched evenly according to their sex and age. The test group had 6,759 patients diagnosed with rosacea, and the control group had 33,795 patients who did not have rosacea.
The research found out that the females with rosacea had a higher risk of multiple sclerosis (MS), celiac disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and Type 1 diabetes mellitus. The males with rosacea, on the other hand, only showed a higher likelihood of developing rheumatoid arthritis.
Researchers have noticed that this link between rosacea and autoimmune diseases could be due to common lifestyle and environmental factors and not due to a genetic link.
Rosacea and Parkinson’s disease
Denmark researchers have found a link between rosacea and Parkinson’s disease. They say that patients who are diagnosed with rosacea are 1.71 times more likely to develop Parkinson’s disease than those who do not have rosacea, and the patients who have ocular rosacea are 2.03 times more likely to develop Parkinson’s disease than the rest of the people who do not have rosacea. Not only are they at a higher risk of developing Parkinson’s disease, they are also at a greater risk of getting the young-onset Parkinson’s disease. Its symptoms appear approximately 2.4 years earlier in patients with rosacea than those without the skin condition.
The exact reason for this connection is not known, but researchers have found out that the matrix metalloproteinase (MMP) activity may have a role to play. Patients with rosacea, Parkinson’s disease, and other neurodegenerative diseases all have an increased level of MMP activity.
Rosacea and Alzheimer’s disease
Researchers in Denmark have also found a relationship between rosacea and Alzheimer’s disease. This research was carried out by a few scientists at the University of Copenhagen. They collected data from the Danish adult population in the years between 1997 and 2012. The population was about 5.6 million out of which 82,400 individuals had been diagnosed with rosacea. Out of this entire population, the researchers have found out that 99,000 people had dementia with 29,000 of Alzheimer’s disease cases.
After a careful study, Danish researchers have found out that the patients who were diagnosed with rosacea had a 7 percent risk of developing dementia and a 25 percent risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease compared to the people who did not have the skin condition. When assessing the risk according to the sex of an individual, they found out that females with rosacea had a 28 percent risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease whereas males with rosacea had only a 16 percent risk of acquiring the condition.