PHOTODYNAMIC TUMOR THERAPY (PDT)
Photodynamic Therapy (PDT) is one of the most interesting and promising therapeutic approaches in the treatment of various tumor diseases.
The method is based on the stimulation of a light-sensitive substance (photosensitizer). It is either applied to the skin in the form of a cream, given into the bloodstream by infusion and/or is injected locally into the tumor.
The photosensitizing agent binds to any kind of tumor cells that are present in the body. After excitation with (laser) light, these are destroyed by formation of active oxygen radicals.
An essential advantage over traditional chemotherapy is that the immune system is not weakened, but strengthened by the positive effects of intravenous laser therapy. In addition, secondary immunization effects appear (PDTimmunization).
Photodynamic Therapy may also be combined very effectively with low-dose chemotherapy. There are even chemotherapeutics on the market that can be stimulated by laser therapy. Compared to standard chemotherapy, the side effects are significantly lower.
External PDT for the Treatment of Skin Cancer
For the treatment of basal cell carcinoma or keratosis a special cream with light-sensitive substances (e.g., 5-ALA) is applied locally to the affected skin area.
The subsequent laser irradiation destroys tumor cells selectively.
Next: Systemic and Interstitial PDT