Photodynamic therapy (PDT) is a two-step process to treat a variety of skin diseases including actinic keratoses (pre-cancerous lesions), acne, and photoaging. Photodynamic therapy specifically treats the problem skin areas while leaving normal skin unaffected.
ACTINIC KERATOSES (PRE-CANCERS)
To treat actinic keratoses (pre-cancers), a photosensitizing solution (Levulan® Kerastick®) is applied to the area of skin to be treated and is taken up by the targeted cells. While the patient is resting, these cells convert the photosensitizer to a light sensitive pharmaceutical compound. A light source or laser exposure activates the light sensitive compound to eliminate the targeted pre-cancerous cells. At Curcio Dermatology, we use the BLU-U light.
To treat moderate inflammatory acne, the blue light is shined on the skin without a photosensitizing drug. The BLU-U offers effective, non-invasive and pain-free blue light treatment for acne. Narrow band blue light causes a photodynamic effect within the oil gland that kills P. acnes, the bacteria primarily responsible for acne. When used in a series of sessions, it provides a simple, non-invasive treatment regimen. BLU-U treatments can be a primary treatment, an alternative to pharmaceuticals and topicals, or an adjunct to skin care programs.
Photodynamic treatments are safe, effective and well tolerated by most patients, but typically care must be taken to avoid exposure to sunlight for 48 hours following the treatment.