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Photodynamic therapy (PDT) is a non-surgical procedure that involves the application of a photosensitising agent (ALA) to the skin’s surface, which is then stimulated by a special light source known as red wavelength light. Exposure to this type of light has no adverse effects on the skin, unlike other wavelengths of light, such as x-ray and ultraviolet, which emit radiation.
Once the photosensitising agent is applied to the surface of the skin, it is absorbed by the bacteria present in the acne and the sebaceous glands in the skin, rendering them photosensitive. As the red wavelength light is cast over the skin’s surface, the bacteria dissolves and the sebaceous glands diminish.
PDT is a safe procedure that can be used on all skin types and on any part of the body. Whilst there are no known complications for PDT, we do not perform this procedure on patients who are:
A patient undergoing PDT treatment for acne will typically have one treatment every 3 or 4 weeks, for a total of 3 treatments. After the third treatment, maintenance will generally consist of one treatment every 3 months. For some patients, only one treatment every 6 months may be required.
PDT causes your skin to become highly sensitive to sunlight for around 48 hours after the procedure, so it’s strongly advised to avoid sunlight where possible and apply sunscreen to help prevent sunburn during this time. Directly following the treatment, some patients may experience some redness and innocuous swelling, akin to minor sunburn. The reddish appearance of the treated skin will typically last for one to two weeks. During the first week immediately following your treatment, your skin may feel taut and dehydrated and there may be some peeling.
Unlike other acne treatments such as Roaccutane, PDT carries no chronic or enduring side effects. Medication such as Roaccutane can leave long-term users vulnerable to a whole litany of adverse complications. PDT on the other hand, only causes minor, temporary discomfort to the patient, while delivering remarkable results.
To enquire about the acne treatment Gold Coast offered at our Skin Clinic Robina, contact us today.