PDT (Photodynamic Therapy) is an FDA approved for treatment of multiple Actinic Keratoses. It is covered by most insurance carriers. Most of our patients feel the treatment is much better than treatment with other methods, such as Ln2 or Effudex.
What are Actinic Keratoses (AKs)? They are rough-textured, dry, scaly patches on the skin that are caused by excessive exposure to ultraviolet light such as sunlight. They most often occur on the face, scalp, ears, neck, hands and arms. They can ranges in color from skin-toned to reddish-brown. They can be as small as a pinhead, or larger than a quarter. It is important to have them treated as they are considered pre-cancerous they may turn in to skin cancer.
How does PDT work? First, a medical assistant will prep the patient’s skin with a scrub. They will then apply a topical solution to the affected areas. This solution will need to be left on the area(s) for a minimum of one hour before the PDT treatment begins. After the incubation period, the patient will be place in front of the BLU-U blue light. This light is of low intensity and will not heat the skin; however, during the light treatment, you may experience sensations of burning, tingling, stinging, or prickling of the treated AKs. Following the treatment, the AKs and surrounding skin may redden, and swelling and scaling may also occur; however these effects are temporary and should completely resolve a few days after treatment. The patient will need to stay out of sunlight or bright indoor light prior to, and for at least 48 hours after treatment. It is recommended that you repeat the treatment in 6-8 weeks. Most patients, after two treatments, report a noticeable improvement to the feel and appearance of their skin.