Rosacea - Causes

What caused your rosacea?

Share your story with others:

MedicineNet appreciates your comment. Your comment may be displayed on the site and will always be published anonymously.Patient Comments FAQs

Enter your Comment

Tell us a bit about your background to make your comments more useful to other MedicineNet users. (Optional)

Screen Name: *

Gender of Patient: Male Female

Age Range of Patient:

I am a: Patient Caregiver


* Screen Name will appear next to the published comment. Please do not include your full name or email address.

By submitting your comment, and other materials (collectively referred to as a "Submission") to MedicineNet, you grant MedicineNet permission to use, copy, transmit, publish, display, edit and modify your Submission in connection with its Web site. MedicineNet will not pay you for your Submission. You represent that you have all rights necessary for MedicineNet to use your Submission as set forth above.

Please keep these guidelines in mind when writing your comment:

  • Please make sure you address the question asked.
  • Due to the overwhelming number of comments received, not all comments will be published.
  • When selecting comments to publish, our staff will choose those that are educational and complement the topic. Please try to stay on topic.
  • Your comment may be edited. We would typically edit comments to make them clearer and more readable. We will remove personal information such as last names, email and web addresses, and other potentially harmful information.
  • We will not notify you if your comment has been published. We suggest that you check back on the topic article regularly.
  • We do not provide medical or healthcare advice, treatment, or diagnosis.

Thank you for participating!


I have read and agree to abide by the MedicineNet Terms and Conditions and the MedicineNet Privacy Policy (required).

To prevent our systems from spam, please complete the following prior to submitting your comment.

Please select the white square:

Rosacea Causes

Ultimately, the cause of rosacea is unknown, but it is generally agreed that affected people have an unusual degree of vascular hyper-reactivity in that they tend to manifest vigorous and prolonged facial flushing in response to the ingestion of hot liquids. After a time, the flushing becomes permanent due to persistent enlargement of small facial blood vessels (telangiectasia).

It seems likely that genes also play some role in this condition. The frequency of rosacea has been estimated to be as high as 10% of an adult Swedish population. It is said to be most common among in those of Celtic ancestry and is less common in darkly pigmented races. In a recently published study, a family history of rosacea, smoking, and sensitivity to sunlight were the only significant predictive factors for rosacea.

Many people with rosacea seem to have a lowered threshold for facial irritation. This predisposition seems to be correlated with elevated levels of certain inflammatory chemicals and a defective barrier function of the skin. When the skin's normal barrier function is restored, levels of these inflammatory substances decrease to normal.

There seems to be no association between the presence of Helicobacter pylori (bacteria that cause inflammation and ulcer development) in the gastrointestinal tract and rosacea, as had been proposed by some authors.

Excessive use of potent topical steroids on facial skin can induce a rosacea-like condition. Although the relationship to rosacea is controversial, some people have facial follicles that are infested by a mite, Demodex folliculorum, which may cause signs and symptoms that are easily confused with rosacea. This diagnosis can be made by a physician and then treated successfully with appropriate topical medications (permethrin cream).

High levels of serum ferritin, an iron-carrying protein found in serum, may play a role in the exacerbation of certain cases of rosacea.

Return to Rosacea

Stay Informed!

Get the latest health and medical information delivered direct to your inbox FREE!