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Rosacea Review - Newsletter of the National Rosacea Society

Sun Protection May Require Proper Sunscreen

While sun exposure is one of the most common trigger factors for flare-ups, finding a sunscreen that does not irritate the face can be a challenge for many rosacea sufferers.

"Individuals with rosacea are often uniquely sensitive to topical preparations applied to the face," said Dr. Mark Lebwohl, chairman of Dermatology, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, at the recent annual meeting of the American Academy of Dermatology. "For this reason, attention to ingredients can help patients find products that work best for them."

He noted a recent study that found the protective ingredients dimethicone and cyclomethicone may prevent irritation from other sunscreen agents in patients with rosacea.1

In the study, rosacea patients rated the degree of stinging produced after one minute by two different sunscreen preparations. They were instructed to forego makeup and other skin products, and to apply a different sunscreen to either side of the face.

The sunscreen ingredient Padimate O, a para-aminobenzoic acid (PABA) ester, caused irritation in many subjects. However, the sunscreen with dimethicone and cyclomethicone as well as PABA was significantly less irritating.

Many physicians also advise rosacea patients to use pediatric sunscreen formulations because they may be gentler and less likely to cause skin irritation.

Associated References

  1. Nichols K, Desai N, Lebwohl MG: Effective sunscreen ingredients and cutaneous irritation in patients with rosacea. Cutis. 1998;61:344-346.

 

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The National Rosacea Society is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization whose mission is to improve the lives of people with rosacea by raising awareness, providing public health information and supporting medical research on this widespread but little-known disorder. The information the Society provides should not be considered medical advice, nor is it intended to replace

consultation with a qualified physician. The Society does not evaluate, endorse or recommend any particular medications, products, equipment or treatments. Rosacea may vary substantially from one patient to another, and treatment must be tailored by a physician for each individual case. For more information, visit About Us.