Rosacea Review - Newsletter of the National Rosacea SocietyRosacea Review - Newsletter of the National Rosacea Society

Rosacea Awareness Month Marks Strides in Spotting Life-Disruptive Disorder

Facial redness that doesn’t go away? Inexplicable bumps and pimples? Irritated eyes? All are signs of rosacea. April was designated as Rosacea Awareness Month to educate the public on this often life-disruptive condition affecting more than 16 million Americans — most of whom don’t know it. 

“Even though signs of rosacea have been documented in art and literature for centuries, virtually all that is understood about this disorder in medical science has been discovered in the last 15 years,” said Dr. Richard Gallo, chairman of dermatology at the University of California – San Diego. “Unlike the mysteries of the past, dermatologists are now able to identify the signs and symptoms of rosacea based on a thorough understanding of the disease process.” 

A consensus committee and review panel of 28 rosacea experts, led by Dr. Gallo, recently published an update to the NRS standard diagnostic guidelines for rosacea based on this new knowledge.1 See the back page for details. 

The red face of rosacea was described as early as the 1300s in Chaucer’s “Canterbury Tales,” and the less common swollen nose was shown in the 1540 Renaissance painting “The Old Man and his Grandson” by Ghirlandaio. Among the most famous modern rosacea sufferers are former President Bill Clinton, Princess Diana, singer Sam Smith and comedian Amy Schumer. 

Despite its prevalence, in an NRS survey of 1,459 patients, 47 percent said they had never heard of rosacea prior to their diagnosis and 95 percent said they had known little about the condition. In other NRS surveys, 90 percent of patients said rosacea’s effect on personal appearance had lowered their self-esteem, and 52 percent said they had avoided face-to-face contact because of the disorder. 

Individuals with any of the following warning signs of rosacea are urged to see a dermatologist for diagnosis and treatment: facial redness, visible blood vessels, bumps or pimples on the face, or eye irritation. 

During April and throughout the year, information and materials on rosacea are available on the NRS website at Visit the official Rosacea Awareness Month landing page at and follow the online conversation using the hashtag #rosacea.


Gallo RL, Granstein RD, Kang S, et al. Standard classification and pathophysiology of rosacea: The 2017 update by the National Rosacea Society Expert Committee. J Am Acad Dermatol 2017 Oct 28. pii: S0190-9622(17)32297-1. doi: 10.1016/j. jaad.2017.08.037.