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PDT (Photo Dynamic Therapy) Specialist

James H. Petrin, MD -  - Board Certified Dermatologist

Petrin Dermatology

James H. Petrin, MD

Board Certified Dermatologist located in Redmond, WA

When it comes to skin cancer treatments, you probably prefer a noninvasive option with no lasting side effects. At Petrin Dermatology in Redmond, Washington, James Petrin, MD, and his team offer photodynamic therapy for some types of skin cancer. This highly effective treatment uses a combination of medications and intense light to kill the cancer cells. To consult with the team about photodynamic therapy for your skin cancer, call Petrin Dermatology or book an appointment online today.

PDT (Photo Dynamic Therapy)

What is photodynamic therapy?

Photodynamic therapy is a treatment for cancer that uses a combination of medications and high-intensity light, like lasers, to kill cancerous cells. During a photodynamic therapy treatment at Petrin Dermatology, you receive a special light-sensitive medication that your cells readily absorb. For skin cancer, the medication comes in the form of a topical cream.

Your provider instructs you to wait for about three hours as your cells absorb the drug. Once you’re ready, your provider cleans your skin before shining a powerful light onto the cancerous area. The cells that absorb the light-sensitive medication also absorb the light. The energy from the light causes the medication to react with oxygen and form a cancer cell-killing chemical. 

You typically only need one photodynamic therapy treatment to effectively kill your skin cancer cells. After the treatment, your skin forms a crust in the treatment area that eventually falls off without intervention. Once it falls off, you’ll see renewed, healthy skin underneath. 

What does photodynamic therapy treat?

At Petrin Dermatology, the team offers photodynamic therapy to treat certain cases of skin cancer. Photodynamic therapy is especially effective for skin cancers on areas of skin directly over bone, like on your knees, elbows, shins, or hands.

Photodynamic therapy is also particularly effective for treating superficial basal cell carcinoma, the most common type of skin cancer in young adults. It often appears scaly with a translucent, poorly defined border. 

What are the benefits of using photodynamic therapy for treatment?

If you receive a skin cancer diagnosis, the team at Petrin Dermatology helps you better understand your diagnosis and review the treatment options for your cancer type. Photodynamic therapy is often a great option for skin cancer treatment because of these benefits:

  • No long-term side effects
  • Noninvasive
  • Cost-effective
  • Precise targeting of cancerous cells
  • Fast treatment times
  • Repeatable in the same spots (unlike radiation)
  • Minimal or no scarring

If your dermatologist feels that photodynamic therapy is the best treatment option for you, they’ll let you know exactly why they think it’s the right choice. 

If you have skin cancer, don’t hesitate to call Petrin Dermatology to learn more about photodynamic therapy or book an appointment online today.