Rosacea, a common skin disease often mistaken as acne, is most commonly found in middle-age women with fair skin. However, Rosacea can be found on darker skin types, and can develop in patients well into their 60s and 70s. Though the cause of rosacea is not fully understood, certain proteins in epidermal cells that function to reduce inflammation in the skin are abnormal in patients with rosacea. While currently there is no cure for rosacea, extremely effective treatment options are available to control the disease.
Rosacea is a chronic skin condition of the face (and sometimes eyes), characterized by the appearance of redness or flushing, prominent blood vessels and acne-like pimples. Often confused with acne, rosacea is a distinct inflammatory condition without the increased oil, pore clogging, and bacteria that characterize acne. Often appearing rather suddenly on the central face, symptoms of rosacea can include burning, stinging, itching, mild swelling and feelings of increased facial heat or warmth.
Certain triggers, which vary by individual, are known to aggravate the symptoms of this disease. These include prolonged sun exposure, spicy or hot foods or beverages, smoking, extreme temperatures and alcohol consumption. As with most chronic skin conditions, stress can significantly exacerbate the symptoms associated with rosacea.
The primary goal in the treatment of rosacea is to reduce both redness and inflammation, thereby not only alleviating the symptoms but also improving the appearance of the skin. Topical treatments may include use of a gentle cleanser, liberal use of sun protection and a prescription topical antibiotic.
Rosacea treatment often includes a combination of topical treatments, oral medications and/or in-office laser or light therapy procedures. Oral antibiotics such as doxycycline or minocycline have significant anti-inflammatory benefits for the skin at low dosages, and can be very effective in reducing the appearance of redness, swelling and pimples that accompany rosacea flares.
The V-Beam laser and Intense Pulse Light (IPL) available at Advanced Dermatology are two of the most effective treatments in reducing persistent facial redness associated with rosacea. These types of therapies are aimed at eliminating the permanently dilated superficial blood vessels that crowd the surface of the epidermis in rosacea patients that cause the look of chronic red skin. Additionally these treatments often result in a significant reduction of the vascular symptoms associated with rosacea, such as frequent episodic flushing, swelling and feelings of increased warmth in the central face. Once a series of V-beam or IPL sessions has been performed, long- term results can be expected, though periodic follow-up treatments will be necessary to eliminate newly formed blood vessels.
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