The skin condition which causes ruddy, red cheeks could be connected with an increased risk of Alzheimer’s disease, claim researchers.

Characterised by red, flushing cheeks, nose and forehead, which can also feel tingling, stinging and become permanently, rosacea can affect around one in 10 people in the UK.

Now researchers from the University of Copenhagen think they may have discovered a link between rosacea and dementia, particularly Alzheimer’s disease.

In a study running from 1997 to 2012 of 5,591,718 Danish people, of which 82,439 had rosacea, they discovered patients with rosacea had a 25 per cent increased risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease.

Rosacea is a chronic inflammatory skin condition, caused by elevated levels of certain proteins and peptides, which are also involved in different neurodegenerative diseases including Parkinson’s.

‘A sub-type of patients have prominent neurological symptoms such as burning and stinging pain in the skin, migraines, and neuropsychiatric symptoms, suggesting a link between rosacea and neurological diseases,’ says Dr Alexander Egeberg, who lead the study.

‘Emerging evidence suggests that rosacea may be linked with neurological disorders including Parkinson’s disease and now also Alzheimer’s disease.’

The researchers were quick to point out that having rosacea doesn’t necessarily mean that you’ll go on to develop dementia. However, the study could be useful in providing new insights in the link between skin and neurodegenerative diseases, and perhaps even improve dementia diagnosis.

This study was published in the Annals of Neurology.

Source: www.eurekalert.org