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What is photodynamic acne therapy? How does it work to help my acne?

Photodynamic therapy, is a relatively new acne treatment that uses a combination of a drug called 5-amino levulinic acid (ALA) and blue light or mixed blue and red light for the treatment of moderate to severe acne. This is in contrast to those older ultraviolet light acne treatments that are kwown to provide only transient improvement, added to that the prolonged use of especially of ultraviolet A, may worsen those with comedonal acne (i.e. mostly blackheads and whiteheads). Also, the increased risk of skin cancer and photoaging makes the older ultraviolet light acne treatments even a less desirable acne therapy.

What the dermatologist does is to apply the 5-amino levulinic acid to the affected areas for about 15 to 30 minutes, this followed by using either a pulsed light device or pulsed dye laser to activate the areas where the 5-amino levulinic acid was applied. The results have shown that it is great for those with severe forms of acne condition. It is learnt that photodynamic therapy are also being used to treat certain types of skin cancer.

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