PDT or Blu-U PHOTODYNAMIC THERAPY
Also known as blue light treatment, PDT uses a substance called photosensitizer together with a particular wavelength of light to destroy unwanted cells.
- Actinic keratoses. AKs are irregular rough spots made up of sun-induced precancerous cells.
- In research centers, some superficial skin cancers are being treated entirely with PDT
- Ideal for patients who prefer not to undergo the more prolonged topical chemotherapeutic regimens.
- Inflammatory acne, meaning the pustules, red bumps and cysts (not the whiteheads and blackheads) can show a remarkable response to PDT.
- The interaction between the photosensitizing agent and the light treatment activates an oxygen molecule that can destroy nearby cells.
- The Blu-U light is ideal for precancerous cells as they are located more superficially in the skin.
- The acne process, on the other hand, starts deeper in the follicle and therefore requires a deeper penetrating red light source.
- The procedure requires three steps: application, incubation and light activation.
- First the drug is applied to prepped skin in the form of a liquid or a cream. We use both the Kerastick as well as the newer Ameluz product. The drug is allowed to air dry and then incubate from 1 to 3 hours, sometimes overnight, depending on the condition.
- The skin is then exposed to the appropriate light source. The patient generally feels an intense tingling or heat. The use of a small fan increases the patient’s comfort.
- In some cases, even daylight may be used as a light source.
- The treated areas are usually light sensitive for the next 48 hours.
- Depending on the severity of the condition, more than one session may be required.