Rosacea: Red in the Face

A long-term disease that's limited to the face and eyes, rosacea causes redness, pimples, and—in later stages—thickened skin.

Symptoms of rosacea include frequent flushing, sometimes with a burning or swelling feeling, a swollen nose, small red lines under the skin and inflamed eyes or eyelids.

Rosacea is most common in women, adults between 30 and 60 and in people with fair skin. The exact cause of the disease is unknown, but may be tied to blood vessels that expand too easily. Many people with rosacea point to a host of factors that make their symptoms worse. These include very cold temperatures, emotional stress and alcohol consumption, among others.

Oral and topical antibiotics are sometimes used in the treatment of rosacea, as are cortisone creams. The avoidance of environmental factors - as well as surgery to remove excess layers of skin and small red lines - can make the symptoms of rosacea more tolerable.

Talking to Your Dermatologist About Rosacea

Often, dermatologists treat rosacea with a combination of therapies. Since rosacea can worsen if not treated, it's important to seek treatment as soon as possible.

Share all of your symptoms with your dermatologist, and keep a diary of flare-ups and what you believe may have contributed to them. Medications, foods and activities can all trigger flare-ups of rosacea. Keeping track of them will help you control the condition.