Photodynamic Therapy

There are various aspects of your health or environment that can negatively affect your complexion and skin tone. For instance, as you age, you may experience varying levels of damage from ultraviolet rays due to prolonged sun exposure. On the other hand, you may experience imperfections due to medical conditions such as rosacea. At Sutton Place Dermatology, we are committed to helping you achieve a glowing complexion with advanced treatments like photodynamic therapy that can help manage your symptoms and achieve your goals.

What is photodynamic therapy?

Photodynamic therapy, also known as blue light therapy, uses a photosensitizing solution with intense pulsed light energy to help rejuvenate and invigorate your skin while only targeting damaged or unhealthy skin. Previously, photodynamic therapy had been used as a treatment for skin cancer, but it has evolved to be a treatment option that now allows dermatologists to treat various skin conditions.

Photodynamic therapy can be used to:

  • Reduce the redness of rosacea
  • Soften wrinkling or age lines
  • Diminish pore size to reduce acne
  • Increase collagen production
  • Even out skin tone
  • Treat skin cancer
  • Reduce sun damage
  • Treat lesions

What is photodynamic therapy like?

Photodynamic therapy is a minimally invasive procedure that is performed on an outpatient basis. First, a photosensitizing solution is applied to the area that is later going to be targeted with the pulsed light. After the application of a photosensitizing solution, there will be an incubation period where the solution is being absorbed by your skin. The incubation time depends mainly on what condition you are having treated with photodynamic therapy, and the period of incubation may vary from a few minutes up to an hour. After the complete absorption of the photosensitizing solution, the intense pulsed blue light will be administered to the area. The reaction between the pulsed light and photosensitizing solution results in the diminishing of skin irregularities or abnormalities.

Photodynamic therapy is a procedure that requires little downtime. In most patients, this minimally invasive technique does not cause pain, burning, or discomfort of any kind. After your treatment, it is not uncommon for your skin to appear red or irritated for the two weeks following your procedure. After photodynamic therapy, your skin will be highly sensitive to light and the sun, so it is vital to avoid prolonged sun exposure for at least two days following your procedure. After two days, a strong sunblock is advised to protect your skin from sunburn and sun damage.

Depending on the condition you are treating with photodynamic therapy, you may need more than one session of blue light therapy. In most cases, only one session is required to promote healing in the targeted area, but in cases of a more severe skin condition, you may need multiple blue light therapy sessions to maximize results. Our dermatologists will discuss your case and personal goals with photodynamic therapy, and they can also help create a treatment regimen that will best achieve your personal desires and manage your skin condition.

How can I learn more about photodynamic therapy?

Our dermatologists would be glad to discuss photodynamic therapy with you. To request a personal consultation with our dermatologists to discuss photodynamic therapy, please request an appointment online or call 212.838.0270.

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