- > 5% worldwide prevalence
Rosacea is primarily manifested as erythematous flushing, blushing, telangiectasias, papules, and pustules affecting the central third of the face. Combination of symptoms and signs focused around the central face can be divided in primary and secondary features.
One or more present
|Secondary features |
May/may not be present
|Flushing (transient erythema)||Burning or stinging|
|Papules and pustules||Dry appearance|
Clinical subtypes:Subtypes of rosacea are based on the predominant signs and symptoms. The subtypes are not mutually exclusive. Patients can present with features of multiple subtypes, and the predominant features and areas of involvement can change over time.
- Erythemato-telangiectatic rosacea (ETR) (M/C): Persistent erythema with intermittent flushing of nose and cheeks
- Papulopustular rosacea (PPR) “adult acne”: Eruptions of papules and pustules on the affected area on the face.
- Phymatous rosacea: Fibrosis and hypertrophy of sebaceous glands, typically on the nose of male patients (rhinophyma). Other sites of manifestation:
- Mentophyma (chin)
- Metophyma (forehead)
- Gnatophyma (chin)
- Otophyma (ears)
- Blepharophyma (eyelids)
- Ocular rosacea: Tearing, dry eye, gritty sensation, pruritus, hordeola, and blepharitis.
GRADE (Grading of Recommendations, Assessment, Development and Evaluation) scale:Helps in making judgments about quality of evidence and strength of recommendations
|Clear||0||No inflammatory lesions present, no erythema|
|Almost clear||1||Very few small papules/pustules, very mild erythema present|
|Mild||2||Few small papules/pustules, mild erythema|
|Moderate||3||Several small or large papules/pustules, moderate erythema|
|Severe||4||Numerous small and/or large papules/pustules, severe erythema|
“The perfect cure of [acne] rosacea is, in fact, never accomplished” –Thomas Bateman, Delineations of cutaneous diseases, 1812
The choice of therapy is guided by the signs and symptoms present for the individual patient. The majority of the therapies aim to reduce inflammation. Though they provide anti-inflammatory properties, topical steroids should be avoided in rosacea as they are associated with rebound flaring or induction of rosacea-like perioral dermatitis.
Lifestyle changes:Identify and avoid triggers
- UV light
- Weather changes
- Alcoholic beverages
Universal skin care:Rosacea often causes the skin to become sensitive and irritable, and products that cause irritation should be avoided. Cosmetics containing green pigment are best for masking persistent erythema.
- pH-balanced skin cleansers (as opposed to soaps)
- Broad-spectrum sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher
- Regular use of moisturizers
Topical management:Persistent erythema and telangiectasias are not completely secondary to inflammation and often require treatment targeting the skin vasculature
- Vascular laser
Surgical management:Phymatous changes of rosacea result in irreversible changes to the skin that require surgical intervention when indicated.
- Laser excision and skin grafting