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The Risks of Ocular Rosacea

Aug 25, 2007
Statistics show that more than 14 million in the U.S. people suffer from some form of rosacea, be it mild or severe. Approximately 60% of these people go on to develop ocular rosacea, a condition in which the redness travels to the eyelids. This condition often causes blockages of the oil glands on the eyelids causing styes, inflammation of the eyelids, dry eyes, and even a chronic problem with conjunctivitis (pink eye).

Although ocular rosacea is common, it is often misdiagnosed or under diagnosed, despite the potential for serious sight-threatening conditions. Ocular rosacea is most frequently diagnosed when signs and symptoms of rosacea are also present; however, ocular symptoms may precede acne rosacea visible lesions in up to 20% of patients who get the condition. If the ocular signs develop before the cutaneous lesions appear, the diagnosis of ocular rosacea is difficult to establish.

In rare cases ocular rosacea can travel to the cornea causing infections and problems with the inner blood vessels. Keeping eye drops on hand for the sensation of dry eyes is extremely helpful, but consultations with medical professionals who are well familiarized with the condition is critical.

Treatments for ocular rosacea are typically a combination of local and systemic therapy as well as cleansing and tearing agents, all of which may be adjusted over time. All of this requires a highly motivated patient. Topical antibiotics or oral antibiotics, light therapies, and sometimes even microdermabrasion may be called upon by your skin care professional.

Other treatments for ocular signs and symptoms of rosacea have included warm soaks and lid scrubs when debris or discharge is associated. If these treatments for the symptoms of ocular rosacea are not sufficient, more drastic treatments may be needed. In some severe cases involves closure of the tear drainage ducts which is accomplished with silicone plugs, which are reversible, or punctal cautery (a burning of the tear duct openings), which is a relatively permanent ocular treatment.

Doctors may also prescribe oral antibiotics to treat the infected oil gland. Often, using eye drops to alleviate the itchy or dry sensation helps and then the warm compress and antibiotics will take care of the other symptoms of ocular rosacea.

The most important thing for any person with rosacea to do is to try to prevent the rosacea from becoming severe. There is no cure for rosacea, but with proper skin care and diet, the flare-ups can be reduced in severity and frequency. If the rosacea on your cheeks, chin, and nose are reduced, then it is far less common for the condition to spread to the eyes.

Evidence shows that keeping rosacea flare-ups to a minimum will help ease or prevent ocular conditions from occuring, but it can be hard to keep some rosacea flare-ups to a minimum, especially if stress or air temperatures are a trigger. Try removing spicy foods, alcohol, and even an excess of sugar. If this does not help, another consultation with your doctor may be necessary to help reduce the flare ups caused by rosacea.
About the Author
Battling acne rosacea? You don't have to let this nasty condition ruin your life! Get real tips and skin care help to allow you to win the fight against rosacea.

Visit RosaceaTreatmentRx.com and check out articles such as Rosacea Laser Treatment
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