New Treatments for Rosacea Offers Excellent Cosmetic Results
Rosacea is a troublesome condition. It is estimated to affect 16 million Americans. Although it is not life-threatening, it can seriously reduce the quality of life of sufferers. It generally first manifests in middle-age as excessively red facial skin. Over time, the redness worsens and may be accompanied by bumps, pimples, visible blood vessels, and red, irritated eyes. In severe cases, the skin on the nose thickens to create a misshapen, bulbous nose. The disease is most common in women, but tends to have more severe symptoms in men.
Control the symptoms
Until recently, treatments revolved around lifestyle changes to reduce flare-ups of triggers, various ointments to try to control the pimples, and laser treatments to get rid of the visible blood vessels and help with thickening skin. Laser treatments can be especially helpful, and are available at FirstCare Medical Center. However, because the cause was unknown, treatment was aimed at trying to control the symptoms.
Researchers noticed that rosacea sufferers had increased levels of demodex mites in their skin. Everyone has a few demodex mites living in their skin. These tiny mites live in the foreheads, cheeks, and nose- the same areas of the face that are most commonly affected by rosacea. Although it is as yet unclear why rosacea sufferers have increased numbers of mites on their faces, or how the mites contribute to the symptoms of rosacea, a new treatment aimed at controlling the mites is showing excellent results.
Ivermectin is a medication that has long been used to treat parasitic conditions. It is fed to livestock to control internal parasites, given to dogs to control heartworm infestations, and is used to treat mange, a condition caused by mite infestations. It is generally believed to be quite safe for administration to both people and animals, either orally or topically.
A topical ivermectin preparation was recently approved by the FDA to treat rosacea. The ointment is applied to the face. In clinical practice, dermatologists report it is working as well as or better than any other topical treatments for rosacea- with fewer side effects. Individuals who have long-standing rosacea may still benefit from laser treatments to remove visible blood vessels and control thickened skin. Individuals in the earlier stages of rosacea may be able to prevent these symptoms altogether with the new treatment.
If you have signs or symptoms of rosacea, do not hesitate to make an appointment today.