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Photodynamic therapy (PDT)

Photodynamic therapy activates a topical drug using a light, producing a chemical reaction that reduces acne, acne scars, wrinkles and other skin conditions.

Photodynamic Therapy (PDT) Side Effects

Much like a sunburn, PDT can cause redness, peeling, crusting, itching, swelling, and infection. PDT can also make your skin ultra sensitive to light for up to two days - even particularly bright indoor bulbs.

Who shouldn't use it: Photodynamic therapy should not be used to treat moles or birthmarks. Women who are pregnant or nursing should not consider PDT treatments. PDT can discolor darker complexions, leaving splotchy brown spots in its wake. Your doctor should provide eye protection from the light source (either goggles or corneal shields).

Drawbacks: Your skin will be red after PDT - it may be scaly and uneven for seven to 14 days after treatment. Photodynamic therapy is a new treatment, so its long-term effects are still unknown.

Recovery Time For Photodynamic Therapy (PDT)

PDT can leave your skin swollen and sensitive for four days to a week. Redness may persist for up to two weeks. Makeup can be used to cover up redness, but it won't hide skin that peels. It could be five to seven days before you're ready to step out in public, though really, it's up to your individual degree of vanity.

After care for Photodynamic therapy (PDT): Wear sunscreen for at least two days after PDT to protect your skin, which will still be ultra-sensitive to light (even the sun and indoor bulbs!). Wear long sleeves (for arm treatment), pants (for leg treatment) and a hat (for face treatment) for the first 48 hours. Yes, even if it's hot out. Or just stay inside and eat ice cream.

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