Photodynamic Therapy (PDT) for Precancerous Lesions of the Skin


This non-invasive outpatient procedure uses a topical, light-activated medication to eliminate precancerous lesions of the skin. PDT can also help rejuvenate the skin, softening the appearance of wrinkles and scars.


To prepare for the procedure, the physician cleans the skin. The physician may use a dermabrasion instrument to remove dead cells from the skin's outer layer. A topical medication is then applied to the skin and left on for up to an hour. During this time, the medication is absorbed by the abnormal cells of the skin.

Light Treatment

Once the absorption is complete, the skin is exposed to a blue light source for several minutes. The medication reacts to the light, destroying the precancerous cells while leaving the healthy cells unaffected.


Following the treatment, the patient will experience redness, tenderness and peeling of the treated area. The treated skin must be protected from sunlight for a period of time after the procedure. The skin will heal within a few weeks. Multiple treatments, performed a few weeks apart, may be required to achieve optimal results.