November 26, 2015

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What is rosacea? Is rosacea contagious? What does rosacea look like?

Rosacea (ro-zay-sha) is a common, acne-like, benign skin condition of adults, with a worldwide distribution. Rosacea is estimated to affect at least 16 million people in the United States alone and approximately 45 million worldwide. Most people with rosacea are Caucasian and have fair skin. The main symptoms of rosacea include red or pink facial skin, small dilated blood vessels, small red bumps sometimes containing pus, cysts, and pink or irritated eyes. Many people who have rosacea may just assume they have very sensitive skin that blushes or flushes easily.

Rosacea is considered a chronic (long term), incurable skin condition with periodic ups and downs. As opposed to traditional or teenage acne, most adult patients do not "outgrow" rosacea. Rosacea characteristically involves the central region of the face, mainly the forehead, cheeks, chin, and the lower half of the nose. It is most commonly seen in people with light skin and particularly in those of English, Irish, and Scottish backgrounds. Some famous people with rosacea include the former U.S. President Bill Clinton and W.C. Fields. Rosacea is not directly caused by alcohol intake, but it is presumed to aggravated by it. Rosacea is not considered contagious or infectious.

The redness in rosacea, often aggravated by flushing, may cause small blood vessels in the face to enlarge (dilate) permanently and become more visible through the skin, appearing like tiny red lines (called telangiectasias). Continual or repeated episodes of flushing and blushing may promote inflammation, causing small red bumps that often resemble teenage acne. Rosacea is also referred to as acne rosacea. Continue Reading

Reviewed on 2/18/2015
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