Laser Treatment for Rosacea

What is Rosacea?

Rosacea is a common, troublesome skin condition that is characterized by a variety of features:

  • Facial redness, most commonly on the nose, cheeks and chin
  • Increasing dilated facial blood vessels
  • Skin sensitivity (easily irritated by a wide variety of chemicals and substances)
  • Varying degree of inflammation of the skin glands that can look like acne (pimples)
  • Soft tissue enlargement which can result in deformity of the nose, the cheeks and the chin (see Rosacea under medical conditions for more information)
  • Inflammation, itchiness and burning of the eyes

Treatment Options

If rosacea is left untreated, it will become worse over time, will increase in resistance to treatment and will increase in morbidity (discomfort, pain, sensitivity, acne like lesions etc). It is important to have a dermatologist diagnose rosacea, as it can often appear to be another condition, and recommend an appropriate treatment option for your particular presentation that will be administered correctly.

Rosacea is an example of a skin condition that has both a medical and cosmetic component. The majority of patients with rosacea will seek treatment for the redness and dilated blood that can lead to embarrassment, increased self-consciousness, and decreased self-esteem. While the acne component of rosacea will respond to medicated creams and oral antibiotics,at least temporarily, the redness, dilated blood vessels and skin sensitivity respond best to laser therapy.

How Do Laser and Light Devices Treat Rosacea?

Recent advances in laser technology bring several new and effective treatments for rosacea. Both true laser and IPL (Intense Pulsed Light) devices have been proven effective in improving the appearance of rosacea.

When a laser or light device is used, light is absorbed by the blood vessels and converted to heat, which damages the blood vessel walls. The damaged blood vessels are then absorbed and carried away by the lymphatic system, removing the redness and the discernible blood vessels associated with rosacea from the skin.

Laser or light therapy can also improve both the acne and the sensitivity components of rosacea by reducing the blood flow to the irritable glands and reducing the sensitized nerves that are with the dilated blood vessels respectively.

How Effective is Laser and Light Therapy for Rosacea?

Rosacea treatment by laser and IPL takes only a short time from 15 to 60 minutes, depending on the size of the treatment area.  It will generally take more than one treatment to achieve significant reduction of redness, depending on the degree of redness present, but in most cases, improvement is noted after each treatment session.

Treatment discomfort and downtime are minimal, but do depend on the degree of the rosacea at the time of presentation and on the particular patient. With modern technology, treatment can be completed in most cases without any bruising of the skin.  This is a huge improvement from previous lasers where patients used to get blue-black bruises that would last for several weeks!

The results of laser/light rosacea therapy are permanent. However, some degree of maintenance therapy is beneficial or required in most cases, as new vessels can develop.

Dr. Lubitz, as a Board Certified Dermatologist, has a special interest in Rosacea and has been effectively treating this condition for over 15 years. If you do have Rosacea, you don’t have to live with the facial redness, dilated blood vessels, acne and skin sensitivity that patients with Rosacea commonly suffer from.

At Art of SKIN Dermatology, Laser and Cosmetic Surgery, we have a variety of laser and light energy devices:

  • Cynergy PDL (Pulse Dye Laser – the established gold standard for blood vessel treatment)
  • Cynergy Nd:YAG 1064 laser with Multiplex Technology
  • Elite MPX Nd:YAG 1064 laser and IPL
  • Palomar Icon IPL
  • Alexandrite 755 nm laser with Multiplex technology

This variety of laser and IPL devices gives us the most advanced technology on the market, allowing us to achieve the safest and most effective results possible for our patients.

Prior to having any treatment for Rosacea, it is important that the proper diagnosis first be determined. Several other skin conditions, such as Lupus, can mimic Rosacea. It is recommended that patients who might have Rosacea be examined by a Dermatologist. A dermatologist is a professionally trained skin specialist who can diagnose Rosacea, educate the patient on available treatment options, and provide the most effective and safe treatment.

If you have rosacea, we encourage you to call Art of SKIN Dermatology, Laser and Cosmetic Surgery for a consultation. Our experienced medical and cosmetic staff will be able to advise you on your available options for reducing your rosacea condition.