BLU-U Light Treatment Arizona Dermatologist
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Photodynamic Therapy (PDT) (Photorejuvenation)

What is photodynamic therapy (PDT)?

Photodynamic therapy (PDT) combines a topical drug, called a photosensitizer, with a special light source to treat a variety of skin disorders and has recently emerged as an effective treatment for aging skin.

PDT may be recommended to treat actinic keratoses (precancerous growths on sun-damaged skin), as well as moderate-to-severe acne, wrinkles, visible blood vessels, rosacea, certain cancers, including skin cancer, enlarged sebaceous glands, and psoriasis.

What happens during the procedure?

First, your skin will be thoroughly cleansed before the photosensitizing drug is applied. This scrubbing will help the skin absorb the drug more readily. Then a clear solution called aminolevulinic acid will be applied to the entire surface of the treated skin.

The drug will need time to penetrate the skin. The recommend period of time may from 30 minutes to several hours, depending on your skin’s absorption and the type of light source that will be used. Possible light sources used include lasers, blue or red light, intense pulsed light (IPL), light emitting diodes (LEDs), or even natural sunlight.

During the procedure, you may feel a burning sensation on certain parts of your skin, which can be alleviated by cold air or fans. Afterward, it will be extremely important to protect your skin from light for 48 hours, as it will be very light-sensitive. Avoid going out in the sun during this time if you can, but if you can’t avoid being outside, wear long sleeves and pants, a brimmed hat and a scarf, and thick zinc-oxide-based sunblock.

Are there any complications from PDT?

For the first few days after treatment, you may experience skin redness, irritation, and peeling, as well as mild discomfort that feels like a sunburn. If these symptoms persist or seem severe, contact your doctor. 

In addition to the mild side effects listed above, PDT can also lead to skin crusting or prolonged irritation and peeling. More serious reactions can occur in people treated for a large number of pre-cancerous lesion, because their skin is absorbing more of the drug. Complications can also arise in people who fail to protect their skin from the sun after treatment—it’s important to remember that the sun can get to the skin even on cloudy days or inside a car.

Fortunately, these complications usually go away within a week or two and don’t interfere with the treatment’s results.

North Scottsdale Office

8817 E. Bell Road
Suite 101
Scottsdale, AZ 85260
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Central Phoenix Office

740 E. Highland Avenue
Suite 101
Phoenix, AZ 85014
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Gilbert Office

3509 S. Mercy Road
Suite 103
Gilbert, AZ 85297
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American Association for Laser Medicine & SurgeryAmerican Academy of DermatologyAmercian Board of DermatologyAmerican Academy for Dermatologic Surgery
Our Phoenix Arizona dermatologists are available throughout AZ cities including Gilbert, Chandler, Mesa, Tempe, Ahwatukee, Carefree, Cave Cree, Pardise Valley, Fountain Hills, Anthem and Surprise. Call us if you are looking for a skin cancer dermatologist in Arizona, acne treatment dermatologist in Arizona, Rosacea dermatologists in Arizona, wart removal treatment in Arizona, psoriasis treatment in Arizona, Vitiligo treatment in Arizona, eczema treatment in Arizona, skin infection treatment in Arizona, Arizona dermatologists who treat hair loss, eliminating wrinkles in Arizona, eliminating brown spots in Arizona, looking to find out how To get rid of broken blood vessels in Arizona, laser hair removal in Arizona, dermatology laser surgery in Arizona, Botox® injections in Arizona, Restylane® treatment in Arizona, tattoo removal in Arizona, Fraxel® treatments, BLU-U® Light treatments, dermoscopy, removal of acne scars or sclerotherapy treatment in Arizona.