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Diagnosis of Rosacea

  • Amy Scholten, MPH
Publication Type:

Condition InDepth

Diagnosis of Rosacea

The doctor will ask about symptoms and medical and family history. A physical exam will be done that includes looking at the skin. How the rash looks is often enough to make the diagnosis.

Some people may be asked to see doctors who focus on skin or eye problems. There are no tests to diagnose rosacea. Some tests can help rule out other problems. The tests include:

Diagnosing rosacea will also mean figuring out what subtype a person has. Knowing that can help with treatment. There are 4 subtypes of rosacea:

  • Erythematotelangiectatic (subtype 1)—Flushing and lasting redness. This may or may not include blood vessels that can be seen.
  • Papulopustular (subtype 2)—Lasting redness with bumps and/or pimples that come and go.
  • Phymatous (subtype 3)—Skin gets thicker and there can be bumps on the nose, chin, forehead, cheeks, ears, or eyelids.
  • Ocular (subtype 4)—Eye issues such as redness, watering, burning, or swelling eyelids (this can hurt the cornea and lead to vision loss).

A person can have more than one subtype of rosacea.


  • All about rosacea. National Rosacea Society website. Available at: https://www.rosacea.org/patients/all-about-rosacea.
  • Rosacea. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.dynamed.com/condition/rosacea.
  • Rosacea. DermNet New Zealand website. Available at: https://www.dermnetnz.org/topics/rosacea.
  • Rosacea: Diagnosis and treatment. American Academy of Dermatology website. Available at: https://www.aad.org/public/diseases/rosacea/treatment/diagnosis-treat.


  • Nicole S. Meregian, PA
Last Updated:

This content is reviewed regularly and is updated when new and relevant evidence is made available. This information is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with questions regarding a medical condition.