British Skin Foundation - Rosacea

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My father has rosacea

Postby Guest Posts on Mon Apr 10, 2017 11:08 am

Guest post from FT Scotland

Can you help? My father has very severe rosacea which affects his cheeks (his cheeks have a constant red/purple colour and there are lots of visible fine veins, the skin also looks dry and painful) we have only recently managed to get him to visit our GP to discuss treatment options but the GP was very dismissive and now my father has said we will not take it any further. Are there any private options where we can get some cream or something for him? Thanks
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Re: My father has rosacea

Postby Dr Emma Wedgeworth on Thu Apr 13, 2017 12:50 pm

Hi there,

Sorry to hear your father is having a rough time with rosacea.

There are lots of things you can do. As I have said before in a number of different posts, treating rosacea is all about targeting each different aspect of the condition and its causes.

Firstly, look at lifestyle - ie simple things your father can do at home. Minimise triggers such as spicy food, sugary food, alcohol and caffeine. Stop smoking. Avoid UV exposure as much as possible and use a daily sunscreen with broad spectrum protection.

You mention his skin is dry. Dryness and sensitivity is a huge issue in rosacea. Use a gentle hydrating cleanser and moisturiser on a daily basis to keep the skin in good condition. You may also need to try a medical anti-inflammatory to help with the dryness. I find the non-steroid anti-inflammatory creams known as the topical calcineurin inhibitors, to help with dryness. I avoid steroid creams in rosacea.

It sounds like your father has a number of fixed veins on the face. These are best targeted with laser therapy, which is quite difficult to obtain on the NHS at the moment. However, before embarking on this, it may be worth a trial of medical treatment either creams or oral antibiotics, to see how much of the condition is reversible with these treatments.

Definitely worth pursuing!

Hope that helps,
Dr Emma
Dr Emma Wedgeworth
Consultant Dermatologist & BSF spokesperson
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Re: My father has rosacea

Postby Dr Anjali Mahto on Thu Apr 13, 2017 8:27 pm

Many thanks for taking the time to post your question and I agree with Dr Emma's comprehensive response.

Laser and light based treatments such as pulsed dye laser (PDL) and intense pulsed light (IPL) are effective at dealing with redness and Nd:YAG laser can help visible thread veins. Lasers or light based treatments for redness often require multiple sessions of treatment usually carried out about 4-6 weeks apart. A cosmetic dermatologist with laser experience will be able to guide this.

Best wishes,

Dr Anjali Mahto
Consultant Dermatologist and British Skin Foundation spokesperson
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