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June 09, 2015
  • Rosacea sufferers are shown they can be disadvantaged at work, socially and in their relationships as a result of others’ perceptions of their skin1
  • Multi-country survey published in Dermatology and Therapy confirms the extent of psychological and psychosocial impact of facial redness associated with rosacea
  • Research reinforces the need for improved education and professional help to address psychological, as well as, physical symptoms1

LAUSANNE, Switzerland--Study results of an extensive international survey on the impact of facial redness (erythema) of rosacea on sufferers were published in the Springer Healthcare journal Dermatology & Therapy.1 These results, as part of the Face Values: Global Perceptions Survey, showed that both the general public, as well as those affected by the condition themselves, perceive people with facial erythema more negatively when questioned about aspects of daily life.

Subconscious perceptions, and initial reactions of others, revealed the impact of facial erythema on sufferers’ emotional and psychological wellbeing. The findings showed that facial erythema was strongly associated with poor health and negative personality traits; participants affected by rosacea reported negative impacts of the condition emotionally, socially and in the workplace.1

“These results strengthen our commitment as physicians to help our patients better understand the medical nature of rosacea and to address both the psychological and physical aspects of the condition through appropriate treatment. As with many skin conditions the symptoms are directly visible, but patients should not be held back in everyday life as support is available,” said Prof. Dr Thomas Dirschka, lead author, Head of CentroDerm-Clinic Wuppertal, Germany.

6,831 respondents from eight countries were shown images of faces both with and without erythema. Clear faces were strongly related to positive health and personality traits including ‘relaxed’, ‘healthy’ and ‘well’ whereas facial erythema was more strongly associated with poor health and negative personality traits such as ‘sick’, ‘stressed’ and ‘insecure’. These differences in strength of associations between red and clear faces were statistically significant (p<0.05). In reaction to faces with erythema vs. clear faces, respondents were significantly less likely to hire them for a job (70% vs. 85%), think they were married or dating (77% vs. 87%), or be their friend (58% vs. 71%).1

Respondents affected by facial erythema were not satisfied with the appearance of their skin and felt others judged them unfairly.

  • Two-thirds of those with facial erythema have felt an impact socially, with 36% reporting feeling uncomfortable meeting new people.
  • Over half felt it had affected their relationships and personal life, with nearly a third feeling uncomfortable when dating.
  • 77% of subjects with facial erythema associated with rosacea reported that the appearance of their skin had an emotional impact ranging from embarrassment (46%) to feeling sad/depressed (22%).1

Nearly half of participants had experienced direct reactions from other people about their facial erythema, with 15% being told they drink too much, 15% being labelled with having acne and 26% having different skincare routines being recommended to them.1

Furthermore, nearly 80% of respondents affected by facial erythema of rosacea reported difficulty in controlling the symptoms but those with physician-diagnosed rosacea had significantly improved control compared to those without a rosacea diagnosis (39% vs. 20%, p<0.05).1

Commenting on the findings, psychodermatologist and co-author of the paper, Dr Linda Papadopoulos said, “Our research highlights that people with facial erythema not only have to manage the physical symptoms but also the psychological challenges of the disease including the prejudice and negative perceptions of others which causes daily stress and disturbance. As such it’s imperative that when treating clients, health practitioners are aware of, and address, the psychosocial impact of this condition. The positive finding from our research is that sufferers can regain control over their condition and symptoms once diagnosed, so it’s important that those affected feel empowered to seek help from a doctor or dermatologist.”

Facial redness is a common and persistent symptom of rosacea, a treatable skin condition known to affect around 40 million people worldwide.2 Sufferers have a characteristic pattern of persistent redness with intermittent flushing on the forehead, chin, cheeks and lower half of the nose, often accompanied by a burning or stinging sensation, and started or exacerbated by particular triggers.

Galderma funded sponsorship and article processing charges for this study including medical writing assistance.


Notes to Editors

About the Face Values: Global Perceptions Survey

The global research was conducted by Bryter, an independent market research consultancy. This international online survey consisted of self-completed questionnaires with 6,831 participants aged 25 – 64 in eight countries (Germany, United Kingdom, Ireland, Sweden, Denmark, France, Italy and Mexico) recruited from established online general population research panels. Respondents completed online Computer Assisted Web Interviewing psychological assessments based on the Implicit Association Test. Traditional questionnaires provided data on the impact of facial erythema and perceptions of people with rosacea from other participants. The survey was funded by Galderma.

About Act on Red

Act on Red (, supported by Galderma, is a global programme providing information and educational resources on facial redness associated with rosacea.

Research has highlighted that many people affected by facial redness have tried different treatments and remedies without success.3 Combined with a lack of information about their condition, as well as the lack of patient advocacy groups, many people are confused and frustrated about their options and sources of help. The Act on Red programme was therefore developed to address this need by delivering high quality information and resources to people affected by the condition and who may have previously struggled to get the help they need.

About Galderma

Dating back to 1961, Galderma is now present in 80 countries with an extensive product portfolio to treat a range of dermatological conditions. The company partners with health care professionals around the world to meet the skin health needs of people throughout their lifetime. Galderma is a leader in research and development of scientifically-defined and medically-proven solutions for the skin, hair and nails.

Strategic brands include Epiduo, Oracea, Differin, Mirvaso, Soolantra, Tri-Luma, Loceryl, Benzac, Cetaphil, Excipial, Daylong, Metvix, Azzalure/Dysport, Restylane and Emervel.

For more information, please visit

About Dermatology and Therapy

Dermatology and Therapy ( is an international, open access, peer-reviewed, rapid publication journal (peer review in 2 weeks, published 3–4 weeks from acceptance) published by Springer Healthcare. The journal is dedicated to the publication of high-quality preclinical, clinical (all phases), observational, real-world, and health outcomes research around the discovery, development, and use of dermatological therapies. Studies relating to diagnosis, pharmacoeconomics, public health, quality of life, and patient care, management, and education are also encouraged. Areas of focus include, but are not limited to, all clinical aspects of dermatology, such as skin pharmacology; skin development and aging; prevention, diagnosis, and management of skin disorders and melanomas; research into dermal structures and pathology; and all areas of aesthetic dermatology, including skin maintenance, dermatological surgery, and lasers.


1. Dirschka T, et al. Perceptions on the psychological impact of facial erythema associated with rosacea: results of international survey. Dermatol Ther (Heidelb). 2015 May 29. [Epub ahead of print] DOI 10.1007/s13555-015-0077-2. Available online:

2. Shanler S, Ondo A. Successful treatment of the erythema and flushing of rosacea using a topically applied selective a1 adrenergic receptor agonist, oxymetazoline [abstract taken from J Am Acad Dermatol. 2008;58(2):AB9]. Presented at: American Academy of Dermatology 66th Annual Meeting; February 1-5, 2008; San Antonio, TX.

3. Data on file. Galderma Market Research.


Sébastien Cros
Tel: +33 1 58 86 45 92

Posted in: Press release

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