Find out if PDT is right for you
Photo Dynamic Therapy (PDT) – This is an infrequently utilized, but highly effective way to reverse the harmful effects of the sun on skin. It is also very effective in a series of treatments to help control severe acne, even when it is cystic in nature. Some experts feel PDT can be equally or more effective, even, than oral Accutane.
PDT can effectively treat actinic keratosis and even emerging basal cell and squamous cell carcinomas. It has no value whatsoever in the prevention or treatment of melanomas, however.
Our PDT technique takes about 2 ½ to 3 hours to perform in the office. The standard price is $475/treatment and it is performed as a series of steps. First, the skin of the face is prepped with an acetone scrub or microdermabrasion treatment. Then, Levulan is applied over the entire face. Next, we expose the skin to an appropriate light source to activate the Levulan. This could be a Blue-U, IPL, KTP laser, natural sunlight, or a GentleWave machine. In our office, we use the GentleWave because we’ve found this to be more comfortable than most other options and highly effective. The GentleWave activation unit takes 15-30 minutes. Once this is completed, it’s important to protect your skin from any extraneous ambient sunlight for the next 24-36 hours.
The complete process for the patient is virtually painless. Over the subsequent next several days, the treated skin will become red, like sunburn, and then peeling will usually occur. Once the peeling is complete, the resulting skin is clearer and devoid of many of the harmful changes the sun has caused over the preceding many months.
Candidates for this treatment are people with severe uncontrollable acne, a history of or concerns about impending basal or squamous cell skin cancer, and those with a history of long-term heavy sun exposure.