Rosacea

1 What is Rosacea?

Rosacea is a chronic (long-term) skin condition which is characterized by redness on the face around the nose, cheeks, forehead.

This redness is caused due to the dilation of blood vessels and small red pus filled bumps. Most often rosacea occurs in middle aged woman with fair skin.

If rosacea is not treated on time it tends to worsen overtime.

The signs and symptoms of rosacea appear for weeks to months and disappears before flaring up again.

Rosacea is often mistaken for acne. Although, treatment for rosacea cannot cure the disease but control the signs and symptoms.

It is better to see a doctor as early as possible for proper diagnosis and treatment.

2 Symptoms

Persistent facial redness in the central portion of the face is main symptom of rosacea.

Sometimes blood vessels of nose and cheek swell up and become visible.

Many people develop swollen red bumps on their face which resembles acne. These bumps sometimes may contain pus.

Tenderness and local hyperthermia (increased temperature) can be noticed on the skin. About half of the people with rosacea have dryness in the eyes, swelling and reddening of eyelids.

Sometimes eye symptoms can appear earlier than skin symptoms. Another typical feature of rosacea is enlargement in size of nose(rhinophyma) due to thickening in the skin over nose.

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3 Causes

The causes of rosacea is still under investigation but it is believed to be caused by combination of hereditary and environmental factors.

There are a number of factors which can cause an increase in the blood flow to the surface of the skin they include:

  • hot food,
  • beverages spicy food alcohol,
  • extreme temperatures,
  • anger,
  • embarrassment,
  • strenuous exercise,
  • sauna.

Some drugs which act by dilating blood vessels like corticosteroids or blood pressure medications can cause rosacea as an adverse effect.

4 Making a Diagnosis

No specific tests are needed for rosacea diagnosis.

It is recommended to visit a dermatologist as soon as possible.

It is advisable to prepare a list of questions which you might want to ask your doctor. In return the doctor will also have some questions which should be answered correctly in order to have proper treatment.

The main diagnostic criteria used in his case is visual inspection of the skin and history of signs and symptoms.

The doctor would palpate the bumps if present on the skin If present, would look for localized tenderness and increased temperature and also would take the sample of pus (if present) in the pimple for further lab investigations.

It is very important for the doctor to rule out similar skin problems for effective treatment.

5 Treatment

Treatment in case of rosacea is symptomatic treatment that is directed towards reducing the signs and symptoms.

Most often there is requirement of prescribed medications which include: antibiotics, these antibiotics are in the form of gel cream or lotion to be applied on the affected area which will kill or drop the growth of microbe and also possess anti-inflammatory effects.

Generally, it is a short term medication course but is known to cause side effects.

Acne drugs - if antibiotics are ineffective the doctor will most probably suggest to try isotretinoin. It is a powerful drug used in case of severe cystic acne.  It should not be used during pregnancy.

Because it is known to cause severe birth effects. The duration of treatment depends on the severity if disease. Long term treatment is often necessary because reoccurrence of symptoms.

Surgical and other procedures some changes like enlarged nose and enlarged blood vessels become permanent.

So in such cases advanced surgical techniques like laser surgery. And electro surgery reduces the visibility of blood vessels, removes extra tissue around nose and enhance facial appearance.

6 Prevention

It is important to prevent rosacea especially in those cases in which there is hereditary predisposition some simple steps should be followed to prevent rosacea.

Avoid hot and spicy food, avoid alcohol, mental stability. Avoid makeup products and use natural face therapies to improve the appearance of the skin on the face and Washing the face twice a day.

7 Alternative and Homeopathic Remedies

Several alternative remedies some of which include usage of colloidal silver, emu oil, laurel wood, oregano oil and vitamin k can be used as a possible way to treat rosacea.

But there are no definite data to support the effectiveness of these alternative treatment.

It is advisable to consult a doctor before taking dietary supplements or using alternative treatment to treat rosacea.

8 Lifestyle and Coping

Some lifestyle changes are necessary to minimize complications of rosacea.

Some of them include wearing or applying broad spectrum sunscreen, protecting your face from irritant, avoid rubbing or touching of facial skin too much, washing problem areas twice a day with a gentle cleanser, avoid putting makeup especially those alcohols which contain alcohol.

Using green-tinted creams and powders because they are intended to reduce skin redness.

It is very important to talk to a councilor if you feel embarrassed or anxious about the symptoms.

A rosacea support group is present online which can connect you to others with similar problem.

9 Risks and Complications

A family history of rosacea can be a major risk factor for the condition.

Rosacea is completely individualistic disease it is independent of age but is reported to be more frequent in women between the ages of 30-60 having fair skin.

There are no severe complications of the disease but it should be treated because signs and symptoms affect a human psycologically.

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