Rosacea and Thread Veins


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Rosacea is a condition that affects the fair skinned population of the UK and US. Famous people like Alex Ferguson and Bill Clinton are well known sufferers for example. It is typified by redness of the face, known medically as ‘erythema’, and is also often associated with thread veins as the condition causes the dilation of blood vessels in the face, resulting in the appearance of the characteristic spider web pattern of ‘talangiectasia’, or thread veins if you don’t fancy tying your tongue into quite the tangle!

There are four sub-classifications of Rosacea, all with equally challenging names:

  • Erythmatotelangiectatic Rosacea
  • Papulopustular Rosacea
  • Phymatous Rosacea
  • Ocular Rosacea

Erythmatotelaniectatic Rosacea (try saying that ten times in a row!) is the form of the ailment which involves thread veins, and this can occur in conjunction with any of the other subtypes.

How does Rosacea cause thread veins?

Basically people with Rosacea (or if you’re feeling confident enough to say it, more specifically Erythmatotelaniectatic Rosacea) are susceptible to the dilation of blood vessels in the face which contributes both to their characteristic facial redness and thread veins.

Stimuli which would normally cause flushing result in the symptoms of Rosacea.  These include temperature extremes, exercise, exposure to sunlight, stress, sunburn. A number of consumables can also trigger symptoms, these include alcohol, caffeinated beverages, and spicy food. Certain medications and creams like acne treatments are also triggers, of these steroids are a common culprit.

If I have Rosacea, how can I avoid unsightly thread veins?

Avoiding stimulants which would normally irritate your condition is a simple way of controlling the condition and keeping thread veins at bay, if you can resist the odd cheeky curry that is!

Sunlight is known to be a big causal factor, and so avoiding direct and prolonged exposure is ideal. Healthily and regularly applying sun cream is also a good habit to get into.

Can Rosacea and the resulting thread veins be treated?

Quite simply, yes. The condition doesn’t have any health risks attached to it, but is often considered a nuisance, particularly if you’re partial to certain foods and drinks. However treatment options are available if your condition is particularly persistent or irksome. Laser and Intense Pulsed Light treatments can clear up both Rosacea and the resulting thread veins.


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