Friday, August 24, 2012
ROCHESTER, Minn. — A flushed face along with the presence of pimple-like bumps could indicate rosacea (roe-ZAY-she-uh), a common inflammatory skin condition. The August issue of Mayo Clinic Health Letter provides an overview of this progressive condition and ways to manage it.
Rosacea can begin with a tendency to blush. While anyone can develop rosacea, most often the condition occurs in women between 30 and 60 with fair skin and light eye and hair colors.
Persistent red areas may develop in the center area of the face, especially the nose. Over time, small blood vessels on the nose and cheeks may swell and become more visible. Small red bumps may appear. More than half of people with rosacea experience a burning or gritty eye sensation called ocular rosacea. Rarely, late in the course of the disease and most often in men, tissue can build up on or around the nose, giving it a bulbous appearance.
Rosacea typically requires treatment to clear up, but symptoms can often be controlled with medication and self-care.
The first step is avoiding triggers that cause facial flushing. They include:
Topical medications can reduce the pimple-like bumps. Commonly used options include metronidazole (Metrocream, Metrogel, others), tretinoin (Retin-A, Renova, others), benzoyl peroxide, azelaic acid (Azelex, Finacea) and sulfacetamide (Klaron). Topicals may be used alone or in combination with oral antibiotics. Once symptoms improve, topical medications alone can help keep rosacea in remission.
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