What is photodynamic therapy, and what can it be used to treat?

If you have been diagnosed with actinic keratoses (AKs), superficial basal cell carcinomas (sBCCs) or sun damage, working with a dermatologist for treatment is the first step in caring for your skin concerns. At Clear Skin Dermatology, our experienced provider, Dr. Sanjay Siddha, may recommend using Metvix photodynamic therapy to treat multiple AKs, sBCCs and sun damage year-round. It provides the confidence of an in-office solution with no at-home applications, making it a highly desirable option for many of our patients.

What is photodynamic therapy?

Photodynamic therapy, sometimes referred to by its acronym PDT, is a specific type of treatment that uses special drugs, known as photosensitizing agents, along with light to kill cancer cells. It is often used for skin conditions like actinic keratoses and superficial basal cell carcinomas. The photosensitizing agent is applied to the affected area and is then activated by a specific type of light, destroying abnormal cells.

Sun Damaged Skin

Photo courtesy of Galderma

How do I prepare for my upcoming Metvix photodynamic therapy appointment?

Our team will educate you on how to get ready for your appointment. We advise patients to bring an extra shirt or hoodie with them to their appointment, as the spraying of cold water on the skin can cause clothing to be affected. Then, a prescription cream that has been stored to remain cold will be applied to the skin, and we will walk patients through the treatment process so there are no surprises!

What are the possible side effects of Metvix photodynamic therapy?

Some of the more common effects seen in our patients may include:

  • Flaking and peeling of the skin.
  • Swelling and redness.
  • Temporary dark spots/pigmentation areas.
  • Burning and stinging in the first 24 hours.
  • Small pimples or Millia.
  • Blisters.

Schedule an appointment with Clear Skin Dermatology today!

If you reside in or around the areas of Toronto or Newmarket, Ontario and want to speak to Dr. Sanjay Siddha and his team about the benefits of Metvix photodynamic therapy, we invite you to call our office to request a consultation visit to learn more about this and other services readily available at our state-of-the-art practice. We are open to new and returning patients and welcome you into our office for quality, comprehensive skin care by an experienced dermatologist. Please call our Toronto office at (416) 963-5955 or our New Market office at (905) 235-5232.