What Is Rosacea?
Rosacea (pronounced roh-ZAY-sha) is a common but poorly understood disorder of the facial skin that is estimated to affect well over 16 million Americans — and most of them don’t know it. In fact, while rosacea is becoming increasingly widespread as the populous baby boom generation enters the most susceptible ages, a Gallup survey found that 78 percent of Americans have no knowledge of this condition, including how to recognize it and what to do about it.
Because of its red-faced, acne-like effects on personal appearance, however, it can cause significant psychological, social and occupational problems if left untreated.
In surveys by the National Rosacea Society, more than 76 percent of rosacea patients said their condition had lowered their self-confidence and self-esteem, and 41 percent reported that it had caused them to avoid public contact or cancel social engagements. Among rosacea patients with severe symptoms, 88 percent said the disorder had adversely affected their professional interactions, and 51 percent said they had even missed work because of their condition.
While the cause of rosacea is unknown and there is no cure, today medical help is available that can control the signs and symptoms of this potentially life-disruptive disorder. Any one of the following warning signs is a signal to see a dermatologist or other knowledgeable physician for diagnosis and appropriate treatment before the signs and symptoms become increasingly severe:
- Redness on the cheeks, nose, chin or forehead.
- Small visible blood vessels on the face.
- Bumps or pimples on the face.
- Watery or irritated eyes.