Rosacea is thought to affect one in ten people, although those who suffer from the skin condition don’t always know that they have it.
When blood vessels dilate, they can sometimes remain that way, which causes them to show through the surface of the skin. This creates a flushed or ruddy complexion, which can cause embarrassment and self-consciousness.
The condition can worsen if left untreated, however, and this is when it is likely to be confused with acne. If the vessels are significantly weakened they can leak white blood cells, and this can cause the formation of white pimples on the surface of the skin.
If the rosacea is allowed to worsen, it can cause permanent changes to the appearance, with the nose reddening and swelling. It is really important to seek rosacea treatment early on so that the symptoms do not worsen.
Various treatments exist, including the controversial Roaccutane, which has been linked to severe depression and requires the patient to undergo regular blood tests to detect the onset of liver problems.
Laser treatment offers another, non-invasive approach. The haemoglobin in the blood trapped in the dilated vessels absorbs the light, and the energy creates heat. Once the blood is somewhere between 60 and 70°C, the blood coagulates and the vessel collapses.