Rosacea is a chronic skin condition that affects more than 14 million Americans. The cause is unknown and there is no cure, leaving many people to struggle with the often disruptive symptoms of this disorder. Rosacea is not contagious and cannot be spread through skin contact. Rosacea is characterized by redness: flushing, bumps and pimples, bloodshot eyes, and prolonged redness of the face. Because symptoms frequently include pimples that look like whiteheads, rosacea is often confused with acne.
Symptoms of rosacea usually begin after age 30. The condition is three times more common in women than men, but men often report more severe symptoms. This may be because many men wait to be diagnosed, allowing the condition to worsen.
Anyone can get rosacea, although several factors are associated with your likelihood of being affected. There is some indication that rosacea may be inherited, because a large percentage of patients have a family member with the condition. Ethnicity may also play a role. Women of Irish and English descent are the most commonly represented rosacea patients. Generally, those with light skin and eyes between the ages of 30 and 50 are the most likely to have rosacea.
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