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Approximately 14 million people in the United States have rosacea -- many more go undiagnosed. Common symptoms include frequent redness or flushing of the face and small red lines. Although there is no cure for this condition, symptoms can be treated and controlled. Common treatment options include antibiotics and proper skin care (especially of the eyelids if chronic infections are a problem).

What Is Rosacea?

Rosacea is a chronic disease that affects the skin and sometimes the eyes. Characteristics of the condition include redness, pimples, and, in advanced stages, thickened skin. Although rosacea usually affects the face, it can affect parts of the upper body. Despite how common the condition is, many people with rosacea go undiagnosed.
Approximately 14 million people in the United States have rosacea, and it is more common in women (particularly during menopause) than in men. Rosacea tends to occur more frequently in people with fair skin; however, it can occur in people of any skin color.

Common Symptoms

Rosacea has many symptoms, which include:
  • Frequent redness or flushing of the face. The face may also have a burning sensation and slight swelling.
  • Small red lines under the skin, which appear when the blood vessels under the skin get larger. This area of the skin may be somewhat swollen, warm, and red.
  • Constant redness, along with bumps on the skin. Sometimes the bumps have pus inside (pimples), but not always. Solid bumps on the skin may later become painful.
  • Inflamed eyes and eyelids.
  • A swollen nose. In some people (mostly men), the nose becomes red, larger, and bumpy.
  • Thicker skin.
(Click Rosacea Symptoms for more information.)
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
Last updated/reviewed:
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