Q. I was diagnosed with rosacea several years ago, but I've never had any visible blood vessels, bumps or pimples. I have eye irritation, and have only experienced some redness on my face. Is it possible for rosacea not to include its most common signs?
A. The signs and symptoms of rosacea can vary substantially from one patient to another, and may include various combinations of signs and symptoms.
Studies suggest that eye (ocular) symptoms may occur in over half of rosacea patients, and 17 percent of ocular rosacea patients reported they developed their eye symptoms before rosacea affected the face.1 On the other hand, facial redness is one of the most common signs of rosacea, and frequently appears before other signs and symptoms develop. Medical therapy can be tailored to control various signs and symptoms, and may also prevent rosacea from getting worse.
A. Any type of activity that causes flushing could cause a rosacea flare-up for some patients. And, if other aggravating factors are at work, the chore may well result in redness. For instance, don't perform yard work or heavy housecleaning in hot, humid conditions. Avoid sun exposure, and don't overexert yourself. Finally, beware of cleaning products that may contain irritants.
Kligman AM: Ocular rosacea: Current concepts and therapy. Archives of Dermatology. 1997;133:89-90.