Photodynamic Therapy (PDT)

Peraza Dermatology Group currently performs two types of photodynamic therapy (PDT) at our office. Your provider will select the most appropriate for your condition. These treatments are designed to remove actinic keratoses, but PDT treatments also have the unique ability to minimize pore size and reduce oil glands; therefore, it can be used to treat acne and lessen the appearance of some acne scars.

What is it?

Photodynamic therapy (PDT) is a special treatment performed with a topical photosensitizing agent, AMELUZ® (aminolevulinic acid hydrochloride) gel or Levulan® (5-aminolevulinic or ALA), activated by a specific wavelength of light. The treatments remove precancerous zones and spots called actinic keratoses. Sun damage, fine lines, and blotchy pigment may also improve due to the positive effects of the treatments.

How does it work?

Depending on the part of the body being treated, the photosensitizing agent is applied to the skin. After a specified period of time, the drug is absorbed preferentially by the pre-cancerous cells. Then light is applied to the area to be treated. The light causes the drug to react and form a special kind of oxygen molecule that kills the cells.

The light used in PDT comes from certain kinds of light sources, light-emitting diodes (LEDs). The kind of light used depends on the type of cells and where the treatment is located on the body. PDT is usually done as an outpatient procedure.

Where is it used?

PDT can be used anywhere on the body where treatment is required.