Rosacea is a common skin disorder that usually affects the skin on the face. It shows itself in redness on the nose, chin, cheeks, and forehead. It starts as simple redness as if blushing, but if left alone rosacea can develop into a more ruddy redness.
It’s estimated that 14 million Americans have rosacea, but most don’t know it. They think they got a little sunburned (especially true here in sunny Houston). Or that maybe they blush a little easier than most. Or that they had one too many drinks last night.
While usually on the face, rosacea can also appear on the chest, back, or neck. It can even affect the eyes, making them appear bloodshot and watery. Rosacea can lead to solid red bumps and pus-filled pimples. It can make a person very self-conscious.
What causes rosacea?
Rosacea remains somewhat of a mystery, its exact cause unknown. One line of thinking holds that rosacea is a disorder of the blood vessels. Other theories involve microscopic skin mites, fungus, psychological factors, and a malfunction of the connective tissue under the ski.
Although symptoms of rosacea vary greatly between people, these are the primary signs that Dr. Kronberg looks for:
- Flushing— This is often the earliest sign of the disorder, where the person frequently blushes or flushes.
- Persistent redness— This may resemble a sunburn or blush that doesn’t pass.
- Visible blood vessels— Small blood vessels may become visible on the skin.
- Bumps and pimples— This can resemble acne, like small red bumps or pus-filled pimples form. There are never blackheads, though.
- Eye irritation— Called ocular rosacea, this involves bloodshot, watery eyes. Styes can also result.
- Dry appearance— The central facial skin may appear dry but is just very rough.
- Plaques— These are raised red patches, similar to what is found in psoriasis, but the surrounding skin is unaffected.
- Burning or stinging— The face may constantly feel tight, or burning/stinging sensations can develop.
- Swelling— Facial swelling.
- Skin thickening— This usually occurs on the nose and is called rhinophyma, where the skin enlarges due to the production of excess tissue.
Diagnoses and treatment of rosacea
There is no specific “rosacea test,” but Dr. Kronberg is very familiar with the condition. Treatments vary by the individual, but include medications, both oral and topical, to bring the condition under control. Procedures can be performed to remove visible blood vessels and lessen reddening.
Part of Dr. Kronberg’s treatment will be enlightening you on what is triggering your rosacea. She’ll walk you through things that may be triggering your outbreaks.
Do you think you may have rosacea? Cal Dr. Kronbert at 713-771-8941 and let’s take a look.