Photodynamic Therapy for Acne, Actinic Keratosis, & Sun Damage.
PROCEDURE PERFORMED BY ED BECKER, M.D., MELISSA PATTEE, PA-C, and CAREY CANO, PA-C
Blue Light Photodynamic Therapy with Levulan expresses a breakthrough in acne and sun damage treatment for the skin, in addition to decreasing Actinic Keratosis (pre-cancerous spots or lesions of the skin), for which the treatment was originally created.
This non-invasive procedure incorporates facial application of a solution called Levulan, composed of aminolevulinic acid, a compound found naturally within the body that causes a chemical reaction that enhances the skin’s sensitivity to light.
After waiting for thirty to sixty minutes while this solution is absorbed into the skin, treatment proceeds with exposure to a high intensity blue light that causes a chemical reaction which destroys the damaged cells. When the Blue Light is shone upon the Levulan-treated regions for several minutes, there is a decrease in acne-causing bacteria and in Actinic Keratoses.
During and after the procedure, there may be a tingling or slight stinging sensation and some reddening in the treated area, with dry, scaly or crusted patches that will peel.
Photodynamic therapy decreases most facial lesions within seven to ten days. For acne sufferers, it not only lowers the number of acne-causing bacteria, but also shrinks the sebaceous glands where acne starts, which can offer long-term relief. Photodynamic therapy for acne usually needs four to eight treatments, given two to three weeks apart, for the best outcomes.
A specifically efficient technique for reducing sun damage is to combine Levulan application, followed by FotoFacial intense pulsed light (IPL) treatment, followed by a brief treatment with Blue Light: this enhances the effects possible with the FotoFacial itself.