Rosacea comes in many different forms but the most common denominator is probably an over-reactive blood vessel network in the superficial layers of the skin. This sensitivity within the blood leads to the common features of redness, flushing, burning, visible thread veins, bumpiness and spots, and eventually thickening of the skin tissues with pores becoming dilated.
"The common misconception that rosacea is universally linked to excessive alcohol is untrue”
Various words are used by patients to describe the sensation of suffering from rosacea: fullness, burning and flushing being the most common. All of these feelings most likely relate to abnormal excessive blood flow through the superficial vessels just below the skin surface. Individual red elevated bumps or spots are present in a more severe form of rosacea and this can lead to some confusion with a variety of other skin conditions including adult acne. Rosacea spots, unlike adult acne spots, usually do not contain any pus, they are simply red bumps on the surface of the skin and do not produce any discharge. Some patients suffer from overlap conditions between the two, which complicates their diagnosis. When rosacea has been present for a number of years, the blood vessels then become more visible and not just a vague pinkness across the face but as individual purple or red vessels. These can be seen by the naked eye and typically occur across the nose and cheeks.
Treatment of Rosacea
Antibiotics either by mouth or on the skin surface in the form of gel or cream are often very effective but need to be continued for a prolonged period of two or three months minimum in most patients. Physical destruction by Laser Therapy or Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) usually is effective in reducing the redness and visible blood vessels of rosacea in the more advanced stages of this problem. These treatments can also be effective in reducing redness even when the vessels are not large enough to be seen by the naked eye, therefore these treatments can cause an improvement even in the relatively early stages of this condition.
REFERENCES - Rook Textbook of Dermatology; (Wiley-Blackwell; 7th Edition) Chapter 44
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