What is Actinic Keratosis?
Actinic keratosis is a skin lesion that develops as a result of a regular unprotected exposure to UV radiation (that’s why it is also called solar keratosis). The danger of this disease is that it could transform into non-melanoma skin cancer. As far is there is no algorithm for prediction of this lesion behavior, it is highly recommended to remove it. As a rule, with proper treatment and care, this skin condition has a favorable prognosis.
Blue Light (Photodynamic) Therapy for Actinic Keratosis
The treatment of actinic keratosis usually takes two visits to dermatologist office. During the first visit, our dermatologist will perform the initial screening and set the diagnosis. At the second visit, the lesion will be removed.
Technically the procedure is that medication is applied to the affected areas, and in two hours they are exposed to blue light approximately 15 minutes. Chemical reaction accurately destroys lesions
Usually, one treatment is enough to treat the affected areas. After this, you should be careful with the sun, perform regular self-checks and visit your dermatologist once a year for anyone else.
Photodynamic therapy is usually indicated for thin lesions appearing on face and scalp but actually is allowed to be used elsewhere if it feels comfortable.
Is it painful?
Photodynamic therapy is much more comfortable than other treatments utilized for treatment of skin cancers and precancerous lesions. Most patients tolerate it well and do not feel much stress. The treated lesions usually heal in about one week.
What are the risks and precautions?
The treated areas become more sensitive to the sun and could easily burn or blister, so it’s mandatory to avoid sun exposure for 48 hours after the treatment. Sunscreens may not be effective in protecting the skin during this time so avoid the sun as much as possible.
The fact that your skin is prone to developing actinic keratosis means you should be more careful with your outdoor habits than other people. These measures should be taken as a rule:
- Use sunscreen with broad UVA/UVB protection even on cloudy days;
- Wear clothes covering the whole body, a wide-brimmed hat and UV-filtering sunglasses;
- Forget about tanning beds.
Photodynamic Therapy in Celebration Area
Blue light is one of a number of treatments utilized for therapy of Actinic Keratosis. It is necessary to pass the initial examination to figure out if this option is the best in your individual case. Please call 407-566-1616 or fill in the online form to schedule a consultation.