Do you ever see someone who always has a very red face and nose and wonder why? This is a chronic condition called rosacea, something commonly seen and treated at Visage Clinic in Toronto by plastic surgeon Dr. Marc DuPéré.
The symptoms of rosacea are easy to spot. The most common is a facial flushing that may come and go. Persistent redness that looks very similar to a sunburn will occur. Often bumps and pimples accompany rosacea and those bumps can be either solid or pus-filled. Visible spider veins or telangiectasia on the cheeks, nose and chin are part of rosacea. Facial skin is often rough and with raised red patches.
Last (but probably worst of all) the skin can thicken and enlarge, especially on the nose. When this happens, this condition is then called rhinophyma. W.C. Fields was known for his enlarged red nose as is former United States president Bill Clinton.
What causes rosacea?
The exact cause of rosacea is unknown and unproven. There is little doubt however, that certain foods, alcohol, sun exposure and stress seem to be triggers for rosacea in people.
There is no cure for rosacea but there are medical treatments available that can control the signs and symptoms of rosacea. It is extremely important to get treatment as rosacea will worsen if left untreated.
How can rosacea be treated?
One of the best treatments for rosacea is a photofacial using a broadband pulsed light laser such as the Sciton BBL, a treatment alike IPL (intense pulsed light). The broadband light targets the capillaries in the dermal layer of the skin. The light is absorbed by the oxy-hemoglobin, which heats up the capillary, damages them, and causes them to be absorbed by the body’s natural defense system. The face then loses it red appearance.
In addition to successfully treating rosacea, photofacial treatments have now been medically proven to be one of the best treatments for stopping early skin aging. And, there is no downtime!
When beginning photofacial treatments, multiple treatments will be necessary followed by yearly treatments to remove any newly-formed capillaries and maintain healthy-looking skin. Sunscreen with 10.5% zinc oxide is a must as part of your post treatment care of rosacea.
What are other rosacea treatment options?
Lasers are usually not the solution for rosacea unless the ablative and debulking function of our Erbium Sciton laser is required for severe rhinophyma. The ablative treatments are always performed by plastic surgeon Dr. Marc DuPéré as it requires the utmost dexterity and precision.
In some cases, oral and topical antibiotics may be prescribed to relieve the papules, pustules, inflammation and some redness. Vitamin A in low dosage seems to help the facial redness of rosacea. At Visage Clinic in Toronto, we often recommend physician-only ZO Skin Health creams by Dr. Zein Obagi for our patients with rosacea. These products work to calm, maintain and protect all skin types.
One thing to remember, rosacea cannot be cured but it can be managed and the look of your skin can be significantly improved. Just be sure that the treatments are being properly done and supervised by a Board Certified Toronto specialist overseeing the procedures. After all, it is your face!
If you would like to learn more about rosacea treatment options here in Toronto, our team would be happy to help. Request a consultation online or call (416) 929-9800.