Rosacea is a common transient, recurrent or persistent facial rash of unknown cause. Features include facial redness, spots and occasionally swelling of the skin tissue.
Although rosacea can occur in anyone, it most commonly affects middle aged women who have fair skin.
Factors which make rosacea worse include:
- Sun exposure
- Extreme temperatures
- Alcohol and caffeine
- Hot drinks
- Certain food types
Symptoms can begin with episodes of flushing where the skin turns red for a short period of time, but other symptoms can also signify rosacea;
- Burning and stinging
- Permanent redness
- Spots (pustules and papules)
- Small visible blood vessels on the skin
While there’s no cure for rosacea, treatments can control and reduce the signs and symptoms. It is important to use a high factor sun block suitable for sensitive skin (physical block is usually better tolerated).
A range of treatments are available which improve rosacea, including topical anti-inflammatory cream, oral and topical antibiotics and retinoids. Intense Pulse Light (IPL), offered at the Belfast Skin Clinic , is helpful to reduce red dilated vessels.