Symptoms of Rosacea
In addition to facial redness & flushing, other rosacea symptoms include spider veins, rosacea papules, facial pustules, acne pimples, facial swelling, and rhinophyma or enlarged nose.
Eye or ocular symptoms may occur. Ocular symptoms can include, but not limited to burning, stinging, dry, blood shot eyes. Some patients may experience a thickening of the skin. Finally rosacea is not just located on the face alone, you may find it on your upper chest, ears, neck and even your scalp.
Telangiectasia or spider veins are tiny red lines that may appear with the progression of rosacea. This effect is the result of small blood vessels of the face becoming enlarged and emerging closer to the top of the skin. Telangiectasia usually appears on the cheek and nose area and is more noticeable as the rosacea flush subsides. A very small number of dermatologists believe the theory that by searing, sealing, or destroying the vessel by use of lasers will eliminate the telangiectasia. However, the skin needs the blood flow to carry necessary oxygen and nutrients to the skin to stay alive. When these vessels are destroyed, the skin will try to repair itself by creating more arteries and veins to sustain life. And if the skin does not grow more vessels, then necrosis or cell death takes place and the skin dies. So it is most advantageous to have regrowth of the vessels and better yet not to use lasers on skin or any organ unless it is cancerous and the objective is to kill the cancer or a varicose vein and the object is to kill or strip the vein.
The broken blood vessels of Telangiectasia are in a state of permanent vascular dilation. These blood vessels appear as fine red lines appearing in a lacy, spider web pattern just below the surface of the facial skin.
Diffuse redness is a constant flushed facial redness. Diffuse redness generally occurs prior to the appearance of telangiectasia. This form of redness does not come and go but remains constant. It does not increase when the skin becomes heated as it does with flushing.
A Papule is a small elevated inflammatory skin lesion that is firm to the touch, red in color and does not contain pus. A papule can range in size from the size of a small measles lesion to the size of the tip of the little finger. The top of the papule may be rounded, flat, or pointed. Papules result from vascular flushing and dilation. As rosacea progresses, the flushing causes the inflamed tissue to leak out of the blood vessels and deposit in the skin. The inflamed tissue cells slowly migrate to the skin’s surface causing the papule to form. Papules do not form as a result of demodex mites, excess oil production or bacteria. Papules are common lesions in acne.
A Facial pustule is an inflamed small red blister-like lesion on the skin surface which contains pus. Pustules are the result of vascular flushing that occurs around sebaceous glands. Over time the inflamed tissue leaks out of the blood vessels and deposit in the skin. The inflamed tissue cells slowly migrate toward the sebaceous gland or pore, causing in inflammatory pustules. The surrounding skin tissue may be sensitive to the touch, thicken or cause localized swelling. The resulting redness will flare and then ease off but over time may become permanent. A pustule is quite common in acne and is identified as a yellowish-tipped pus-filled lesion. Note: A Pustule is NOT a pimple. A Pimple has a bacterial component and occurs in and around the hair follicle.
Facial pimples are an inflammatory skin eruptions or bumps that occur at or near the hair follicles when the sebaceous glands within the hair follicles of the skin become clogged or plugged from excess oil, dead skin or bacteria. This causes the clogged or plugged follicle to bulge forming a white tipped eruption called a whitehead, or if the top of the eruption is dark in color it may be called a blackhead. If the clogged bulge on the skin bursts or erupts, the bacteria, oil and dead skin cells may enter open or weakened fissures in the skin causing small areas of infection called pustules.
Facial swelling is the result of an abnormal rate of leakage of fluids and proteins from blood vessels. As flushing increases, the flow of proteins and water through the abnormal or stressed walls of the blood vessels results in a drainage or spillage of fluid that accumulates in the facial skin.
Rhinophyma or enlarged nose
Rhinophyma is a more severe of rosacea involving an increase in tissue growth, swelling resulting in a misshapen appearance to the nose. Chronic redness, inflammation, thickened skin with large pores, resembling the peel of an orange along with an increase in the growth and number of sebaceous glands are all common features of Rhinophyma. There is no definitive cause to explain the occurrence of Rhinophyma, however it is noted that is twelve times more prevalent on men than women.