Incidence and prevalence of rosacea: a systematic review and meta-analysis

Br J Dermatol. 2018 Aug;179(2):282-289. doi: 10.1111/bjd.16481. Epub 2018 May 31.


Background: The exact prevalence and incidence of rosacea remain unknown, although it is a common condition associated with severe noncutaneous diseases.

Objectives: To perform a systematic review of the published literature to examine the global incidence and prevalence of rosacea.

Methods: A systematic review of population-based and dermatological outpatient studies reporting the incidence and/or prevalence of rosacea was performed using three electronic medical databases: PubMed, Embase and Web of Science. Data were extracted and a proportion meta-analysis was performed to obtain pooled proportions.

Results: In total 32 studies were included examining a total of 41 populations with 26 519 836 individuals. Twenty-two populations were from Europe, three from Africa, four from Asia, nine from North America and three from South America. The pooled proportion of individuals with rosacea was 5·46% [95% confidence interval (CI) 4·91-6·04] in the general population and 2·39% (95% CI 1·56-3·39) among dermatological outpatients. Self-reported rosacea gave higher prevalence estimates than rosacea diagnosed by clinical examination, suggesting a low specificity of questionnaires based on symptoms. Rosacea affected both women (5·41%, 95% CI 3·85-7·23) and men (3·90%, 95% CI 3·04-4·87), and mostly those aged 45-60 years.

Conclusions: We estimated the global prevalence of rosacea based on published data and found that 5·46% of the adult population is affected. However, the prevalence of rosacea depended on the diagnostic method, with higher estimates in questionnaire studies of rosacea symptoms and lower estimates in health registries with International Classification of Diseases codes.

Publication types

  • Meta-Analysis
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Global Burden of Disease / statistics & numerical data*
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Prevalence
  • Registries / statistics & numerical data*
  • Rosacea / diagnosis
  • Rosacea / epidemiology*
  • Self Report / statistics & numerical data