Correspondence to Tia Roihu, Väinämöisenkatu 23 A 4, FIN-00100 Helsinki, Finland Tel: +358-50-338 8500
Copyright 1998 Munksgaard
The hair follicle mites Demodex folliculorum and Demodex brevis and their role in the pathogenesis of rosacea have been the subject of much debate in the past. We studied the prevalence of Demodex mites in facial skin biopsies obtained from 80 patients with rosacea, 40 with facial eczematous eruption and 40 with lupus erythematosus discoides. The mite prevalence in the rosacea group (51%) was significantly higher than in the rest of the study population (eczema 28% and lupus discoides 31%). Demodex mites were found on all facial sites. The most infested areas in the whole study group were the forehead (49%) and the cheeks (44%). Males were more frequently infested (59%) than females (30%). We did not find any significant difference in mite counts of infested follicles between rosacea and the control group. A lympho-histiocytic cell infiltration was seen around the infested hair follicles. Our results suggest that Demodex mites may play a role in the inflammatory reaction in acne rosacea.