RosaceaNet Article
Rosacea's Effects: More than Skin Deep Patients Say

Patients on both side of the Atlantic agree that rosacea can affect how we feel about ourselves and diminish one’s quality of life. A questionnaire given to French patients with rosacea found that 70% felt they had to hide their rosacea.

The survey also found that 40% of these patients said they felt that having rosacea caused people to stare at them or reject them. Nearly one-quarter, 24%, said the rosacea made them feel dirty and repulsive at least some of the time.

Surveys conducted by the National Rosacea Society in the United States reveal similar sentiments. Almost 70% of rosacea patients surveyed said that the condition lowered their self-confidence. And, 41% said their rosacea caused them to avoid public contact or cancel social engagements. While few French patients, less than 10%, said rosacea affected their social life, 22% of the patients in France said they felt isolated or alone.

Among patients in the United States with severe rosacea, nearly 70% of the patients said that the condition affected their professional lives. Nearly 30% admitted that the condition caused them to miss work. While this effect was not reported in the French study, 65% of French patients with rosacea said that the condition made them feel stressed, and 35% said that their rosacea made them feel aggressive or irritable at least some of the time.

Treatment Can Ease Emotional Toll
Without treatment, rosacea tends to worsen. As the condition progresses, the redness may no longer disappear. Pus-filled bumps and pimple-like lesions can develop. The eyes can become bloodshot and watery. Some people find that their skin begins to thicken. As the physical signs develop, people often feel diminished self-confidence.

Early diagnosis and treatment helps prevent rosacea from progressing. Treatment typically involves applying medication to the skin in order to reduce the inflammation and redness. To help get the rosacea under control, a dermatologist may prescribe an antibiotic, such as clindamycin, doxycycline, or tetracycline.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved a low-dose doxycycline for treating rosacea. While this low dosage relieves rosacea, patients do not have to worry about the side effects associated with antibiotics.

With the treatment options available today, rosacea does not have to diminish one’s quality of life. For more information about how dermatologists treat rosacea, visit Rosacea Treatment.

References:
De Belilovsky, C et al. "EQUALE study: Impact of rosacea on quality of life of affected patients." Presented as a poster (P112) at the 65th Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Dermatology. February 2007; Washington, DC. (No commercial support identified.)

Del Rosso JQ. "'Therapeutic' Treatments for Rosacea." Presented as a poster (P582) at the 65th Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Dermatology. February 2007; Washington, DC. (Support for an educational grant identified.)

National Rosacea Society, "Awareness Month Alerts Public to Warning Signs of Rosacea." Rosacea Review. Summer 2006. Last accessed February 20, 2006 at www.rosacea.org/rr/2006/summer/article_1.php


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