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The cause of rosacea is not yet understood – but what we do understand is how best to take care of you and your skin. Skin Institute’s Dermatologists are ready to condition it can be.


Rosacea might be known as ‘adult acne’ but if you are affected by it, you’ll need more than just your average acne facewash to solve it. Seeking treatment early is hugely important, which is why our experts here at Skin Institute are on hand to help you get your skin back on track and avoid a recurrence of rosacea’s unpleasant symptoms.

Skin diseases are challenging; nothing is more rewarding than seeing my patients getting better.

Dr Kenneth Wong
Dermatologist, Skin Cancer
Treatment Detail Sheet

If you have booked, or plan to, this information is useful to read prior to your dermatology consult.


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People used to refer to the condition as ‘acne rosacea’ or ‘adult acne’, but rosacea and acne are quite different, and you don’t have to have suffered from acne in younger years to develop rosacea later in life.

Rosacea mostly affects people in their 30s and 40s, especially those with fair skin, blue eyes and of Celtic origin, with men and women equally affected, and Skin Institute’s treatments are effective across the genders.

Both conditions involve red spots and pustules, but with rosacea, these are dome-shaped instead of pointed – and there will be no blackheads, whiteheads, cysts or lumps. Rosacea will generally only affect the face, and you may find your skin feeling swollen and hot.

There are other symptoms that often accompany rosacea, including:

  • A flushed red face (due to persistent red veins, or ‘telangiectasia’)
  • Eyelids that are red, sore or gritty
  • Sun sensitivity
  • Sensitivity to hot or spicy food and drink
  • Sensitivity to certain cosmetics and sunscreens
  • An enlarged nose (‘rhinophyma’)


Rosacea is more than simply a cosmetic inconvenience. You may seek treatment for a variety of reasons:

  • Physical discomfort caused by the condition
  • Aesthetic appearance leaving you self-conscious
  • Rosacea having an impact on your social and professional life
  • Your eyes may also be affected, which could lead to corneal damage and vision loss

The cause of rosacea is unknown. However, if you know that it has a tendency to appear in your family, or if you suspect you can see the early signs of rosacea developing, there are some preventative measures that you can take:

  • Avoid oil-based facial creams; use water-based make-up and sunscreen instead
  • Avoid excessive sun exposure
  • Limit consumption of alcohol and hot or spicy foods
  • Avoid hot showers and bath and warm rooms

There are four main elements involved in our comprehensive treatment of rosacea. Depending on your particular case, you may be treated with all four, or you may only require a combination of two or three areas. Rest assured that your skin is safe with us.

  • Oral antibiotics. The papules, pustules and eye symptoms of rosacea will be lessened by the anti-inflammatory effects of antibiotics.
  • Topical antibiotics. If your case is mild, topical antibiotics applied to the affected areas may be the only treatment you require – if you suffer from more severe rosacea, our dermatologists will likely prescribe oral and topical antibiotics together.
  • Vascular laser. Persistent red veins can usually be successfully improved with vascular laser treatment. If this treatment is not available or appropriate, cautery or diathermy may be helpful – your doctor will explain these procedures to you in more detail.
  • Surgery. You may deal with an enlarged nose as a symptom of rosacea – this can be treated surgically, or with carbon dioxide lasering (performed by a plastic surgeon).
Rosacea Video
Why Skin Institute?

Since being established in 1994, Skin Institute has been at the forefront of dermatological care in New Zealand. From the beginning, we have demonstrated expertise in the areas of clinical dermatology, veins, cosmetic medicine and surgery, and skin cancer. Today, we are a multi-disciplinary specialist centre, with clinics across the country – and teams of highly qualified medical and nursing staff at each one.

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