Rosacea is a troublesome skin condition for many people. It is visible on the face, making it even more frustrating for the sufferer. There are varying degrees of rosacea, too. Some people have much worse conditions than others. In fact, researchers and doctors who deal with rosacea patients on a regular basis have come up with a grading system. This grading system gives patients and doctors a method for accurately describing and treating rosacea. This accepted grading system also allows for standard in which rosacea is assessed from doctor to doctor.
When a patient comes in to be assessed for rosacea, it is very common for health care providers to use a standard Ã¢â‚¬Å“score cardÃ¢â‚¬Â to assess the situation. They will look for signs and symptoms to make an accurate diagnosis.
The grading of the symptoms and signs will include descriptions such as absent, mild, moderate and severe (or on a scale from zero to three, zero meaning absent of a certain symptom and three meaning the most severe). Doctors will look for flushing, dry appearance, and the presence of rosacea in the eyes, and burning and stinging.
The first thing a doctor will look for when diagnosing rosacea are primary features, which include flushing of the face, a dry appearance (also called nontransient erythema) and pustules or papules. The doctor will rate each feature on the scale of 0 to 3 and will also ask the patient about the intensity and the frequency of the breakouts. He or she may also identify whether or not the flushing occurs during certain times. The severity of the pustules will also make a difference in the diagnosis.
Next, the doctor will look at secondary features. These are symptoms that not all patients with rosacea with have all the time. These include burning or stinging, plaque (or large spots of inflammation), dry appearance on the face, edema (swelling), manifestations of the rosacea in the eye (also called ocular manifestation), peripheral locations (such as spots on the neck, chest, ears or scalp) and changes in the shape and appearance of the nose. All of these symptoms are of interest to your doctor because it will give him or her a chance to understand your condition and how best to treat it.
After these assessments are made, the doctor will take a look at the different areas on the face and rate the severity. For example, some people may have problems on their cheeks and forehead and have no signs on their nose or eyes. Other may have severe problems in their eyes and other may experience disfigurement on the nose, which will require a more aggressive treatment. Some may have all of the above outbreaks at the same time.
Have a standard grading system for rosacea is very important to the doctor and patient both. This ensures that the doctor can give an accurate diagnosis of the condition and the patient can receive the right type of treatment.