Ocular rosacea

Ocular rosacea (roe-ZAY-she-uh) is inflammation of the eye that occurs as a result of rosacea, a chronic, inflammatory condition that affects the skin on your face, nose and forehead. Many people with skin rosacea develop ocular rosacea, usually in combination with skin symptoms, but occasionally ocular rosacea occurs by itself.

Ocular rosacea primarily affects adults between the ages of 30 and 60. Ocular rosacea is more common in people with fair skin.

If you have skin rosacea, you may not realize that your ocular rosacea symptoms, such as dry eyes, are connected to the condition. There's no cure for ocular rosacea, and left untreated, it tends to get worse. There are medications to help you manage the condition.

Symptoms Causes Risk factors Complications Prevention

Signs and symptoms of ocular rosacea can precede skin symptoms, develop at the same time, develop later or occur on their own. Signs and symptoms of ocular rosacea may include:

  • Dry eyes
  • Burning or stinging in the eyes
  • Itchy eyes
  • Grittiness or feeling of having a foreign body in the eye or eyes
  • Blurred vision
  • Sensitivity to light (photophobia)
  • Redness (erythema)
  • Visibly dilated small blood vessels on the white part of the eye
  • Red, swollen eyelids
  • Sties
  • Tearing

The severity of ocular rosacea symptoms don't always match the severity of skin symptoms.

When to see a doctor

Make an appointment to see a doctor if you have symptoms of ocular rosacea, such as dry eyes, burning or itchy eyes, redness, or blurred vision.

If you've been diagnosed with skin rosacea, ask your doctor whether you should undergo periodic eye exams to check for ocular rosacea.

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