A recent study in the European Journal of Dermatology investigated the possible connection between rosacea and insulin resistance – a metabolic disorder that may be a precursor to diabetes – as well as between rosacea and some elements of metabolic syndrome. Researchers noted that rosacea and metabolic disorders appear to have similar pathogenic pathways.
Metabolic syndrome is diagnosed by measuring glucose intolerance, insulin resistance, dyslipidemia (high cholesterol), central obesity (large waist size) and hypertension (high blood pressure). Dr. Asli Akin Belli of the Kocman University Training and Research Hospital in Mugla, Turkey, and colleagues measured these physical parameters and others in 47 rosacea patients and 50 individuals without rosacea. Insulin resistance was calculated according to a standard method that compares insulin and glucose levels in the blood.
The investigators found that rosacea patients were significantly more likely to have insulin resistance, abnormal cholesterol level and high blood pressure. They speculated that the potential association between rosacea and the metabolic disorders may be explained by the presence in all the disorders of increased cathelicidin levels, inflammatory cytokines and oxidative stress. The researchers suggested that further studies with larger numbers of rosacea patients be performed to confirm and clarify their results.
Akin Belli A, Ozba Gok S, Akbaba G, et al. The relationship between rosacea and insulin resistance and metabolic syndrome. European Journal of Dermatology 2016;26(3): 260-4. doi: 10.1684/ejd.2016.2748.