We compared the effects of doxycycline and tetracycline hydrochloride on the subjective symptoms in ocular rosacea. Twenty-four patients with symptomatic ocular rosacea were randomly assigned to two groups and treated with doxycycline 100 mg/day (group 1, 16 patients) or tetracycline hydrochloride 1 g/day (group 2, eight patients). The dosages of each drug were gradually tapered and discontinued according to symptomatic response. At each examination all the manifesting symptoms were scored by the patients. Patients were followed up from six weeks to three years. After six weeks of drug treatment, all patients except one had symptomatic improvement. Although most of the scores of the symptoms were significantly decreased in both groups, greater symptomatic relief occurred in the tetracycline hydrochloride-treated patients (P = .041). However, after three months of treatment there was no significant difference in symptoms between the two groups. Gastrointestinal tract complications occurred in two of the 16 patients (12.5%) in group 1 and in three of the eight patients (37.5%) in group 2. Both tetracycline hydrochloride and doxycycline can control the symptoms of ocular rosacea.