There are a number of medical conditions and disorders that affect the skin with symptoms that are similar to those of rosacea. Not only are these disorders unrelated to rosacea, some can be quite serious. This is why it’s vital to consult a dermatologist or a doctor who can analyze your skin, make a medical diagnosis and rule out other possibilities.
Sensitive skin and redness are often associated with rosacea. However, sensitive skin and skin affected by rosacea are not the same. They do have many similar symptoms and solutions, though.
Acne and rosacea have similar looking papules and pustules, but the differences in terms of causes, symptoms and age of onset separate them. Acne begins in the hair follicle due to thick, sticky excessive sebum, accumulation of dead skin cells and p. acnes bacteria. These factors can result in whiteheads or black heads, symptoms not seen with rosacea. Acne usually has an adolescent onset and can include scarring.
In contrast, rosacea is primarily a disease of inflammation that includes a microscopic skin mite. Unlike many skin conditions, rosacea usually has a late onset, with symptoms appearing between ages 30-50. While rosacea can also include papules and pustules, it usually will not have the scarring associated with acne, plus there may be ocular (eye) involvement. Unfortunately, people often misdiagnose or mistake rosacea papules or pustules with acne. They then become bewildered or frustrated after using acne products to treat what they believed to be acne.
Perioral dermatitis causes red papules usually seen around the nostrils, mouth, or eyes in women aged 20-45. Some might mistake it for rosacea, but it’s actually related to stress and acne vulgaris. Fluoride toothpastes or fluorinated topical glucocorticoid steroids may cause this.
Roseola may look or even sound a little like the word rosacea but it’s actually a viral infection seen in young children under age of three. Symptoms typically begin with high fever, fatigue and issues with respiration, followed by pink or red rash with spots on the torso. It is caused by human herpes virus type 6 or 7.
Lupus erythematosus, a systemic disorder, is similar in appearance with a rash of round or disk shaped bumps or raised patches and adherent scales that lend a whitish appearance. Many times it is accompanied by plugged hair follicles and often occurs in a “butterfly rash” or malar rash. Common symptoms include chest pain when taking a deep breath, fatigue, fever with no other cause, feeling of discomfort or malaise, hair loss, mouth sores, sensitivity to sunlight and swollen lymph nodes.
Note: The above are not meant to diagnose, nor rule out any skin condition. Pevonia® recommends their RS2 line and professional treatment, and most importantly, visiting a dermatologist for a medical diagnosis.