Topical treatments and oral medications are often successful in easing rosacea symptoms, but facial redness and blemishes can persist or cause scarring that requires further treatment. In addition, phymatous rosacea, which causes skin to thicken, is best treated with medical and surgical treatments such as laser therapy and electrosurgery.
Dermatologists at NYU Langone can improve the clarity and smoothness of your skin using these techniques, which are safe and relatively painless. They are done right in your dermatologist’s office.
Laser therapy uses highly focused, powerful beams of light to alleviate redness, reduce the size and appearance of surface blood vessels, and diminish scarring. Sometimes lasers may be used to reduce the thickened outer layers of skin that accumulate on the nose in rhinophyma, a condition associated with rosacea that causes the nose to become bumpy and swollen.
Recovery after laser therapy varies based on the extent of the treatment. Your skin may have a shiny or irritated appearance or be more sensitive for a few days, and you should avoid being in the sun. If your job requires a lot of face-to-face interaction with others, you may prefer to stay home from work for a few days while your skin heals.
Electrosurgery is another method of reducing facial redness by eliminating larger blood vessels that are visible beneath the surface of the skin. A dermatologist uses a thin needle to apply a weak electrical current directly to these blood vessels, causing them to clot and shrink. The blood vessels then form small scabs that disappear in a few days.
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