Rosacea Review: Spring 2016

Rosacea Review - Newsletter of the National Rosacea Society

Genetics have long been thought to play a role in rosacea, but researchers have yet to isolate their influence. In one of the first studies of rosacea to measure and define genetic and environmental contributions, Dr. Daniel Popkin, assistant professor of dermatology at Case Western Reserve University, and colleagues have found that genetics and environmental factors may contribute equally to the disorder.

A researcher in Germany has proposed a novel unifying theory that may explain the molecular origin of rosacea in terms of climate adaptation. He contends that the new concept may not only explain why the disorder’s known triggers can cause flare-ups, but is also consistent with known therapeutic activity against rosacea’s signs and symptoms.

Q. My rosacea is fairly well controlled but I have a lot of skin sensitivity on my face. Is this a problem for other rosacea sufferers, too?

When rosacea patients think of triggers from foods or spices, they likely think of hot peppers as common rosacea irritants. However, there are other possibilities. A 2008 medical journal report, for example, noted the anecdotal case of a patient with subtype 2 rosacea who experienced a sudden spread of her symptoms after using 500-mg cinnamon supplements to help control blood sugar levels.

A recent NRS survey found that while most rosacea patients pay attention to the ingredients in the skin-care products and cosmetics they use, for many it’s a process of trial and error to determine what ingredients to avoid in their particular case.

In the survey of 771 rosacea patients, 90 percent of respondents said they read the ingredient labels of skin-care and cosmetic products before purchasing them, and 86 percent said there were specific ingredients they avoid because of their potential to irritate the skin or cause a rosacea flare-up.

Kallikrein-related peptidases (KLKs), a family of proteases recently identified as having a possible role in the development of rosacea, may help provide a pathway to controlling rosacea’s signs and symptoms, according to an article by Drs. Jan Fischer and Ulf Meyer-Hoffert of the University Hospital Schleswig-Holstein in Germany in the journal Thrombosis and Haemostasis.

Physicians and researchers may soon have a new computer-based process to help objectively assess the redness of subtype 1 (erythematotelangiectatic) rosacea, according to a recent report by researchers from the University of California-Davis.

Right now, the redness of rosacea is typically assessed visually by dermatologists using various scales to evaluate severity, such as the Clinician’s Erythema Assessment, a standard scale that has been demonstrated to be reliable in determining agreement among visual evaluations. Current assessments may also be assisted by photography.

Published by the National Rosacea Society.
Editor: Dr. Lynn Drake, Department of Dermatology, Harvard Medical School.
Managing Editor: Andrew Huff.

Rosacea Review is a newsletter published by the National Rosacea Society for people with rosacea. The newsletter covers information pertaining to the disease and its control, including news on research, results of patient surveys, success stories, lifestyle and environmental factors, and tips on managing its signs and symptoms. To receive Rosacea Review by mail, or to change your mailing address, please click on the subscriptions link on the left.


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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.