Rosacea is a common inflammatory condition especially affecting Caucasian women between 30 and 60 years of age.

Symptoms & Symptoms

  • Easy flushing
  • Background redness of the skin
  • Multiple, small red bumps and pustules on the skin
  • Facial swelling

Complications

  • Dilated capillaries or telangiectasia
  • Rhinophyma – the nose grows larger
  • Occular Rosacea where there is inflammation of the conjunctiva.

Treatment

Unfortunately there is no cure for Rosacea and it is a chronic relapsing condition. One should try and avoid trigger factors that may cause flushing of the skin and these include hot baths, saunas, alcohol and spicy foods.

Patients with Rosacea tend to have more sensitive skins and they need to use the gentlest of cleansers on their skins such as Cetaphil® and I generally do not recommend toners or scrubs. Anti-ageing products that contain retinoids or alpha-hydroxy acids may also aggravate Rosacea.

If there is an inflammatory component such as small red bumps and pustules, then generally treatment with a topical gel such as Rozex® or Skinoren Gel® is recommended.

If the inflammatory component is more pronounced, then one would have to use systemic antibiotics such as Tetralysal®. These tetracycline antibiotics have an anti-inflammatory action. The patient may have to be on these antibiotics for some months and these would then be tapered off over a period of time. Antibiotics are often given on an intermittent basis over a number of years.

The above treatments will improve the inflammatory component of the Rosacea but they will not remove the tiny, broken capillaries or telangiectasia. These can be treated very successfully with Intense Pulsed Light (IPL).

The Occular Rosacea usually responds to Tetralysal® antibiotics taken orally.