How Photodynamic Therapy Can Be Used to Treat Skin Cancer


The saying “prevention is better than cure” cannot be more accurate, especially in matters concerning health. When talking about general health, the skin is one organ that often reflects the body’s health status and thus demands care. Given that the skin is the most visible part of the body that conceals and protects other vital organs, it is very susceptible to diseases. A major concern is skin cancer.

Cancer is referred to as abnormal growth, and skin cancer refers to an abnormal growth on skin cells. The chances of developing skin cancer today are high, considering that Ultraviolet rays from the sun are one of the primary causes. Our everyday activities constantly expose us to harsh rays from the sun. Because of this, there is a strong need to take preventive measures that protect you from developing skin cancer.

This article will focus on the photo dynamic therapy method of treating skin cancer and factors to consider before undergoing it. Please ensure to read to the end for more eye-opening information.

What is Photo Dynamic Therapy?

Photodynamic therapy, or PDT for short, is a form of skin cancer treatment where active liquids are used to kill cancerous skin cell bodies. These active liquids are designed such that they only affect abnormal skin cells. The treatment is a non-invasive procedure as no surgery is required.

How Does Photo Dynamic Therapy Work?

Given that PDT is a field treatment where treatment is done an area at a time, the active liquid is spread over an area where it is allowed to absorb into the skin and incubate abnormal cells. The absorption and incubation process can take between 1-3 hours.

A red and blue LED light is then passed over the area after the absorption and incubation. The process of passing the LED light causes the active liquids to react, killing the abnormal or cancerous cells. However, this treatment does not affect the normal and healthy cells.

Who is Best Suited for Photo Dynamic Therapy?

PDT is mainly used on patients with a history of minor basal cell carcinoma (BCC) or squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) cancer cases, as it is a very effective procedure in killing these cancer cells. It is also effective in removing sun spots. However, using. PDT for advanced BCC or SCC cancers occurs only after excision has been performed, and PDT is then used to kill the remaining cancer cells.

How Painful is PDT?

The level of pain experienced depends on how professional the skin specialist is. Experienced specialists will be able to keep discomfort to a minimum. A successful PDT is characterised by minor discomfort and skin redness.

PDT requires a short period of recovery ranging from 7-14 days. Considering how fragile your skin becomes post-therapy, it is essential to minimise your skin’s exposure to sunlight by staying indoors throughout the recovery process to avoid any complications.

Tips for Photo Dynamic Therapy

  1. Ensure to visit a dermal therapist at least two weeks before the commencing treatment.
  2. Ensure that your skin doctor recommends PDT before considering the treatment.
  3. Make arrangements for pre-and post-PDT.


There are several methods of preventing skin cancer. However, this article has highlighted all you need to know about one of the most-effective clinical treatment methods used in modern medicine, photodynamic therapy.

If you’d like to learn more about the photodynamic therapy treatment services that we offer, please contact us today.