What Kind of Light Therapy is Used for Psoriasis?

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Last Updated on 10 months by Francis

Psoriasis is a chronic autoimmune condition that affects the skin, causing it to become dry, scaly, and inflamed. One treatment option for psoriasis is light therapy, which involves exposing the affected areas of skin to ultraviolet (UV) light. In this introduction, we will discuss the different types of light therapy used for psoriasis and how they can be effective in treating this condition.

Contents

Understanding Psoriasis

Before delving into the kind of light therapy used for psoriasis, it is essential first to understand what psoriasis is. Psoriasis is a chronic autoimmune condition that affects the skin, causing it to become thick, red, and scaly. It is not contagious and can vary in severity from person to person. For some, it can be a minor nuisance that comes and goes, while for others, it can be a severe and debilitating condition that affects their quality of life.

Traditional Treatments for Psoriasis

There are several traditional treatments for psoriasis, including topical creams, oral medications, and light therapy. Topical creams usually contain corticosteroids, vitamin D, or retinoids and are applied directly to the affected area to reduce inflammation and slow down the growth of skin cells. Oral medications are usually reserved for more severe cases of psoriasis and include methotrexate, cyclosporine, and biologics.

A key takeaway from this text is that light therapy, also known as phototherapy, is a non-invasive treatment option for psoriasis that can help reduce inflammation, slow down the growth of skin cells and improve the overall appearance of the skin. There are several types of light therapy used for psoriasis, including narrowband UVB, broad-spectrum UVB, and PUVA. While light therapy has several benefits, it also comes with its own set of risks, including sunburn, skin aging, and an increased risk of skin cancer. It is important to discuss the risks and benefits of light therapy with a healthcare provider before starting treatment.

Light Therapy for Psoriasis

Light therapy, also known as phototherapy, is a non-invasive treatment option for psoriasis that uses specific wavelengths of light to reduce inflammation, slow down the growth of skin cells, and improve the overall appearance of the skin. There are several types of light therapy used for psoriasis, including narrowband UVB, broad-spectrum UVB, and PUVA.

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One key takeaway related to this text is that there are several types of light therapy, including narrowband UVB, broad-spectrum UVB, PUVA, and Excimer laser, used for psoriasis treatment. Light therapy is a non-invasive treatment option that can reduce inflammation, slow down the growth of skin cells, and improve the skin’s overall appearance. While light therapy has several benefits, it also comes with its own set of risks, such as sunburn, skin aging, and an increased risk of skin cancer. Patients should always discuss the risks and benefits of light therapy with a healthcare provider before starting treatment.

Narrowband UVB

Narrowband UVB is the most common type of light therapy used for psoriasis. It uses a specific wavelength of light that is effective in reducing inflammation and slowing down the growth of skin cells. Treatment is usually given two to three times a week, and the duration of each session depends on the severity of the condition.

Broad-Spectrum UVB

Broad-spectrum UVB is another type of light therapy used for psoriasis that uses a wider range of wavelengths than narrowband UVB. This type of light therapy is usually reserved for people who do not respond to narrowband UVB. Treatment is usually given two to three times a week, and the duration of each session depends on the severity of the condition.

PUVA

PUVA is a type of light therapy that uses a combination of a medication called psoralen and UVA light to treat psoriasis. Psoralen makes the skin more sensitive to UVA light, making the treatment more effective. Treatment is usually given two to three times a week, and the duration of each session depends on the severity of the condition.

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Benefits and Risks of Light Therapy for Psoriasis

Light therapy for psoriasis has several benefits, including reducing inflammation, slowing down the growth of skin cells, and improving the overall appearance of the skin. It is also a non-invasive treatment option that does not require oral medications or topical creams, reducing the risk of side effects.

However, like any medical treatment, light therapy for psoriasis comes with its own set of risks. These risks include sunburn, skin aging, and an increased risk of skin cancer. It is essential to discuss the risks and benefits of light therapy with a healthcare provider before starting treatment.

Excimer Laser

Excimer laser is a type of light therapy that uses a laser to target specific areas of the skin affected by psoriasis. The laser emits a high-intensity beam of UVB light that reduces inflammation and slows down the growth of skin cells. Excimer laser is usually given in a dermatologist’s office, and the duration of each session depends on the severity of the condition.

FAQs – What Kind of Light Therapy is Used for Psoriasis?

What is light therapy for psoriasis?

Light therapy for psoriasis involves exposing the affected skin to specific wavelengths of light to reduce inflammation and improve symptoms. This treatment is also called phototherapy and can be conducted in a medical office or at home with a special light-emitting device.

What types of light therapy are used for psoriasis?

There are three types of light therapy that are commonly used for psoriasis treatment: UVB, PUVA, and excimer laser. UVB therapy involves exposing the skin to ultraviolet B light, which slows down the growth of affected skin cells. PUVA therapy uses a combination of UVA light and a medication called psoralen to treat psoriasis symptoms. Excimer laser therapy also uses ultraviolet light, but it is a targeted treatment that delivers a high concentration of light to specific areas of the skin.

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Does light therapy work for all types of psoriasis?

Light therapy can be effective for many different types of psoriasis, including plaque psoriasis and guttate psoriasis. However, it may not be as effective for severe cases of psoriasis or for lesions that are located in areas that are difficult to reach with light therapy equipment.

Are there any risks or side effects associated with light therapy for psoriasis?

Like any medical treatment, light therapy for psoriasis does carry some risks and potential side effects. These can include skin irritation, itching, redness, and blistering. In rare cases, light therapy can also increase the risk of developing skin cancer.

Can light therapy be used in combination with other treatments for psoriasis?

Yes, light therapy can be used in conjunction with other psoriasis treatments, including medications and topical creams. Your doctor will work with you to develop a comprehensive treatment plan that may include light therapy as well as other approaches to manage your symptoms.

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