Salicylic acid peeling in the treatment of rosacea1 , *1
Antonella Tosti MDa, Maria Pia de Padova MDa, Nicola Venturo MDa and Colombina Vincenzi MDa
a Department of Dermatology, University of Bologna, Bologna, Italy
Available online 10 March 2004.
Rosacea is a very common disease that may be classified in 4 stages:
1. Flushing stage or transitory congestive redness
2. Erythrosis stage or persistent teleangiectatic redness
3. Papulopustular or granulomatous stage
4. Phyma stage
The etiology and pathogenesis of rosacea remain poorly understood. Improvements in our understanding of the etiology would probably facilitate a more rational approach to treatment, which has developed along largely empiric lines.
We report here the results of a study performed on 10 patients (9 females and 1 male, aged between 30 and 45 years) affected by papulo-pustular rosacea. All patiens were treated with topical 0.75% metronidazole and with systemic tetracyclines or clarithromycin until complete or almost complete resolution of the papulopustular lesions. Patients were then treated with a series of 3–4 peelings with a 25% salicylic acid solution performed at 3–4 weeks intervals.
Complete resolution of the remaining inflammatory lesions and improvement of erythrosis was obtained in all the patiens. Salicylic acid penetrated more deeply in the areas of inflammation which showed decreased erythema; papule and pustules were rapidly dried at 1 or 2 days after the peeling. These beneficial aspects of salicylic acid peeling are probably determined by the antimmicrobic activity of salicylic acid which also stimulates fibroblasts inducing an improvement of the vascular component of rosacea.
Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology
Volume 50, Issue 3, Supplement 1 , March 2004, Page P72
Supplement to the American Academy of Dermatology: Poster Abstracts