How Does Photodynamic Therapy Work?
Photodynamic therapy (PDT) uses a light and a light activated medication (photosensitizing medication) that destroys the problem skin tissues.
When the photosensitizing medication is applied to the problem skin tissue and activated by light, the medication produces a toxic reaction that damages the unwanted skin cells. The body will naturally shed these cells producing newer, healthier skin in their place. Levulan is a type of medication that does just this. Once the medicine has had time to incubate on the surface of the skin this gives enough time for the abnormal skin cancer cells to take up the medication (normal cells will not in such a short period of time ie., 4 hours) and then when Blue Light activates the medication, this in turn destroys the skin cancer cells.
What Conditions Does Photodynamic Therapy Treat?
What is the Procedure?
At DermMedica, the average Photodynamic Therapy appointment is 5-30 minutes. Patients are scheduled for a quick 10-15 minute appointment early in the day to receive the application of the photosensitizing medication. Patients can then leave the office while the medication incubates and then return in 2-3 hours for the blue light activation treatment.
What is the Recovery Time?
7-10 days – Common effects during recovery of a Photodynamic Therapy treatment include redness, flaking of the skin, tenderness and irritability. Patients are advised to avoid excessive sun exposure and maintain healthy skin moisture as an important part of the recovery process.
What Are the Expected Results?
Younger, softer, smoother skin is the expected result of a Photodynamic Therapy treatment. Best results are achieved after 2-3 sessions and may require more treatments depending on the severity and scope of the condition being treated.