Rosacea is one of the most common skin disorders. Patients will often complain of flushing with certain triggers (i.e. alcohol, heat, hot showers, stress, sun, spicy foods, and more). Another common presentation of rosacea is acne in the area on and around the nose in adults. It is estimated to affect well over 16 million Americans, perhaps even more.
Individuals with rosacea will present the symptoms of acne pimples or flushing as mentioned above, but chronic, lifelong rosacea can lead to other changes as well. Frequently, patients will develop a more permanent long-lasting blush to their face and many will do so with dilated blood vessels (called telangiectasias) that appear wiry. First they may appear around the nose and then progress to the cheeks, chin, and forehead between the brows.
More advanced, chronic versions may lead to changes where the skin on the nose becomes thickened or bulbous, called rhinophyma. Rhinophyma was thought to be caused by excessive alcohol intake, but we now understand that the it is a consequence of long-standing rosacea.
Acne, red-facies, and rhinophyma can cause significant psychological, social and occupational problems if left untreated. Fortunately, dermatologists have several therapeutic options for intervention now from prescription topical medications for acne and/or redness to oral medications that can significantly improve the acne pustules. Office based laser treatments such as the pulsed-dye laser V-Beam Perfecta® can reduce redness and improve the appearance of blood vessels associated with this condition. Multiple treatments are required, which require little or no recovery time.