What is PDT treatment used for?
Photodynamic therapy (PDT) is a two-stage treatment that combines light energy with a drug (photosensitizer) designed to destroy cancerous and precancerous cells after light activation.
What drugs are used in photodynamic therapy?
FDA-approved photosensitizers include porfimer sodium (Photofrin), 5-aminolevulinic acid or ALA (Levulan), and methyl aminolevulinate [MAOP] (Metvix). More drugs may become available in the near future. Photofrin is used intravenously for internal cancers while Levulan and Metvix are applied topically for skin therapy.
How does photodynamic therapy treat cancer?
Photodynamic therapy (PDT) is a treatment that uses a light-sensitive drug and light to destroy cancer cells. The cancer cells absorb the light-sensitive drug. Then a doctor shines a special light or laser on the cells. This activates the drug to release a type of oxygen that kills the cancer cells.
How successful is photodynamic?
PDT is a very safe and effective treatment when it’s used for conditions it’s been officially approved (licensed) to treat. But the following side effects are common: a burning or stinging sensation while the light treatment is done – this usually passes soon after the treatment finishes.
What should I do after photodynamic therapy?
Shower and wash the area immediately and as often as needed. Gently wash the area with soap and water two to three times a day, and apply Aquaphor or Vaseline to the area. Avoidance of harsh or abrasive cleansers is advised. Picking or scrubbing the skin could cause severe irritation or scarring.
How long does photodynamic last?
The treated area of the skin is usually quite red and may appear to be flaking or peeling, as it would after a mild sunburn. The redness, and perhaps some of the flaking, can last for several days to a week or even two weeks. (After that, skin returns to normal.)
What do you put on skin after photodynamic therapy?
After 48 hours (2 days), continue to use a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 on the treated area. If a scab forms on the treated area, don’t remove or pick at it. Apply a moisturizer such as Aquaphor®, Vaseline®, or Cetaphil®.
What should I avoid after photodynamic therapy?
Again, you should avoid all direct sun exposure for 48 hours after your PDT light treatment. During the 48 hours after your PDT light treatment you may experience redness, swelling, and stinging of your treated skin, similar to the reaction that you might have with a bad sunburn. Your skin may feel hot.
How effective is photodynamic?
Studies have shown that PDT can work as well as surgery or radiation therapy in treating certain kinds of cancers and pre-cancers. It has some advantages, such as: It has no long-term side effects when used properly. It’s less invasive than surgery.