PDT is most highly recommended for patients with sun damage skin that is not particularly sensitive, and for those who are candidates for acne treatment and anti-aging techniques. Finally, Photodynamic Therapy is a viable option for patients with superficial types of skin cancer, as a possible solution and treatment for actinic keratosis and basal cell carcinomas.
Indications for Photodynamic Therapy
Candidates for Photodynamic Therapy will be carefully and efficiently evaluated at our office, conveniently located IN central Tucson, AZ, or at our Green Valley location. Per the FDA and DUSA, PDT is used for the treatment of actinic keratoses on the scalp and face only, to treat Bowen’s disease, and as a way to manage one of the most common skin cancers- basal cell carcinoma.
Photodynamic Therapy is most effective for patients in the earlier stages of cancer, as it has the ability to fully eliminate affected, cancerous cells. Patients with a more developed form of skin cancer are advised to use Photodynamic Therapy in conjunction with other therapies to most effectively shrink the size of the cancerous tumor. Because scarring generally does not occur from PDT, affected organs remain largely intact and affected skin tissue is able to be most precisely targeted.
How it Works
Photodynamic Therapy is unique as it uses a calculated amount of light, oxygen, and photosensitizing agents to generate a photochemical reaction, precisely and effectively destroying and killing cancerous cells. Its use can be administered topically, systemically, or as a direct injection into the organ. We will inject the photo reactive chemicals to the affected regions, and a light of pre-determined strength will then be employed to activate the reaction, essentially leading the chemicals to exterminate relevant cancerous cells.
Results of the PDT
The effectiveness of PDT and the amount of required treatment varies on a patient-to-patient basis. Generally, however, the treatment is able to immediately and efficiently reduce the amount of sun-related damage to the skin, improve skin with visible acne and acne scars, and is capable to dramatically eliminate certain skin cancers. Redness of the skin is typical in the first week after treatment, depending most substantially on the patient’s skin sensitivity.
A Photodynamic Therapy procedure lasts an average of 1.5 to 2.5 hours in office and we will assess the number of required treatments on an individual level, in accordance to reaction, effectiveness, and seriousness of the original condition. It is recommended that patients remain indoors and avoid sunlight for the first two days after receiving Photodynamic Therapy.