A recent survey conducted by Galderma suggests that the pandemic may impact rosacea patients, from worsening of signs and symptoms related to mask wearing, to reduced HCP consultations.

Findings from the new online survey involving 220 respondents from Canada and Germany reveal that almost two thirds (63%) are experiencing worsening of their symptoms related to mask wearing, including redness (75%), pimples and/or pustules (72%) and more flare-ups (53%).

Increases Severity, Affects Quality of Life

A recent independent clinical study in Italy, investigating the impact of mask wearing in rosacea and acne vulgaris patients, also found that prolonged use of face masks increases disease severity and significantly impacts the quality of life of rosacea and acne patients.

Despite worsening of symptoms, over 1 in 2 (52%) people surveyed admitted using mask wearing as a way to hide their disease, and 40% are not going out as often in order to avoid wearing a mask. The survey also revealed that almost a third (30%) are spending more time on their skincare routine during the pandemic.

Additionally, nearly half (48%) have changed how they manage their disease since mask wearing, with 51% trying a non-prescription product and only 27% having been prescribed a new treatment by a HCP, a media release from Galderma explains.

“With just a third of rosacea sufferers surveyed booking an appointment with their HCP during the pandemic, there is a huge cause for concern. Our survey suggests that more patients may be self-treating which could mean they are using products that are not specifically tailored for their skin disease and this could, ultimately, do more harm than good.”

— Aliene Noda, Global Medical Franchise Lead Rosacea and Onco-Dermatology Prescription GBU, Galderma

“During the current pandemic, self-medication and inadequate use of prescribed rosacea treatments are concerning. Many rosacea sufferers are hiding their rosacea under a mask to reduce embarrassment. This could however also be worsening their rosacea. If you are suffering from rosacea, do not be afraid to book an appointment with your HCP via phone, video or in-person if possible. It is important to adhere to prescribed treatments and seek professional support if you are experiencing worsening of signs and symptoms because of mask wearing.”

— Prof. Dr Jerry Tan, Adjunct Professor, Western University, Ontario, Canada

The survey shows that only a third (33%) of respondents have visited their HCP in person since the pandemic began, with only 8% having a video consultation. Of those who have not booked an appointment, 47% stated they have not wanted to book an appointment, while 21% have been unable to book one.      

These findings are based on a self-administered survey of www.FaceUpToRosacea.com and www.stelldichdeinerrosacea.de email subscribers during December 2020 – January 2021. Among the respondents, 87% of whom state that they have a rosacea diagnosis from a healthcare provider, and 13% believe that they have rosacea but are not yet diagnosed, per the release.

[Source(s): Galderma, PR Newswire]