Photodynamic Therapy

Photodynamic Therapy

What is photodynamic therapy?

Photodynamic therapy involves the use of two basic elements: a laser light source and a photosensitizing substance. The combined effect of the light source and the photosensitizing substance ensures a successful clinical and aesthetic effect far superior to the individual therapies used. It is used for the treatment of various diseases and blemishes including:

  • Skin carcinomas;
  • Chronological skin aging;
  • Photoaging;
  • Acne
  • Psoriasis
  • Recurrent viral diseases (warts, papillomas)

The treatment requires no topical anesthesia; the number of sessions varies from patient to patient depending also on the importance of the lesion to be treated. It is absolutely mandatory to avoid exposure to the sun until the effect of the photosensitizer is completely finished.

Photodynamic therapy for acne

Photodynamic therapy, after a few sessions, determines the destruction of the sebaceous glands affected. The action of the photosensitizer is very powerful and able to solve not only pustular formations, but also those cystic and nodular. The strength of photodynamic therapy in the treatment of acne is that it affects all aspects of the problem: it decreases sebum production, destroys the bacterial component and removes the follicular cap thanks to an efficient peeling and cell turnover of sebum, bacteria and inflammation. The treatment involves the application of the photosensitizer about an hour before activating the laser source, allowing penetration at the level of the sebaceous follicles. The recent application of photodynamic therapy in the treatment of acne has significantly improved patient satisfaction with treatment quickly, safely and effectively enacted and minimal side effects compared to traditional therapies.
Photodynamic therapy for photoaging

Photodynamic therapy is strongly indicated in those cases where the skin is damaged by photo-ultraviolet rays, usually in people with particularly clear skin. The main signs are the appearance of wrinkles, capillaries and blemishes and a rough appearance of the skin.

Photodynamic therapy for actinic keratoses

Photodynamic therapy is very effective in the treatment of actinic keratosis, precancerous lesions usually present in people with a light skin type.
The photosensitizing substance joins selectively to tumor cells, and its activation by the light source causes the formation of oxygen derivatives which, being toxic to the neoplastic cells, cause their elimination.
The advantage of photodynamic therapy in the treatment of actinic keratoses is that of being able to treat a variety in the same session, including those not visible to the naked eye; a therapy therefore much more effective than traditional methods.

Who shouldn’t undergo treatment with photodynamic therapy?

Patients who use steroids or anti-inflammatory drugs, pregnant women and those with a proven skin photosensitivity are not advised to undergo treatment with photodynamic therapy.