PHOTOTHERAPY: THE MOST MODERN, SAFE AND EFFECTIVE TREATMENT FOR VITILIGO

Phototherapy using narrowband UVB output spectrum is the most appropriate treatment for active or generalized vitiligo, according to the guidelines of the European Academy of Dermatology. The device for targeted phototherapy Excimer Light, which emits light at 308nm of UVB radiation, has been demonstrated to be the best treatment for localized vitiligo.

The effect of phototherapy using the device Excimer Light for the treatment of vitiligo is used for many years now. The greatest advantage is that it reaches its target with no side effects.

In our dermatology clinics phototherapy using the device Excimer Light is the first line treatment for the management of active or generalised vitiligo, as well as for localized vitiligo.

Action “on two fronts”

Phototherapy with the device Excimer Light acts on two fronts as far as the treatment of vitiligo is concerned. First of all, it has immunosuppressive and immunomodulatory properties (local and systemic), and thus it suppresses the attack of the immune system against melanocytes. Melanocytes are the cells that produce the skin pigment (melanin) which are destroyed due to the disease, leading to the appearance of the characteristic white spots on the skin.

At the same time, phototherapy exerts its action on the chromophores of the skin: the keratinocytes and the melanocytes of the skin, and the fibroblasts of the dermis. The therapeutic effect of light stimulates the migration of melanocytes in neighbouring areas showing depigmentation and the synthesis of melanin, resulting in the gradual repigmentation of the skin.

Through phototherapy’s double action, the following are achieved:

  • Control of the disease
  • Restriction of inflammation
  • Repigmentation of the white spots
  • Prevention of new spots’ development

 

Safer and more effective

It has been demonstrated scientifically that the device for phototherapy Excimer Light is more secure and effective than photochemotherapy with PUVA (psoralen and combination of UVA phototherapy). It allows the achievement of disease stabilization, higher percentage of repigmentation without causing side effects like itching, sunburn and pustules, skin hyperpigmentation, or increased risk to develop cataract and melanoma.

Phototherapy with Excimer Light is the best choice, as the device emits light on the safest wavelength at 308nm UVB, excluding the wavelengths of the broad spectrum (Broad-Band, BB) and natural light (sun light) UVB, which are responsible for causing severe erythema and can increase the risk of skin cancer. The wavelength of Excimer Light takes full advantage of the therapeutic properties of light. Patients show greater tolerance since no side effects are caused, and therefore there are no limitations regarding treatment dose, something that should be taken into consideration with the wavelengths of the broad spectrum.

The device for targeted phototherapy Excimer Light allows us to provide even more aggressive treatment, since its effects are exerted only on the areas with depigmentation, without affecting the surrounding normal tissues. As a result, treatment effects are visible faster, while skin responds even better.

Suitable for small children

In our dermatology clinics phototherapy is repeated 2-3 times per week and it is applied in an aggressive manner, so that to achieve the desired clinical outcome faster, without allowing time for the patient’s skin to get used to the light preventing light penetration and its therapeutic effect. The treatment is so safe that it can be even applied to small children, pregnant or breast-feeding women, as well as to people suffering from renal or hepatic impairment.

The areas that show faster response to phototherapy include the face, the neck, the trunk and upper limbs and repigmentation usually starts to become visible after about the tenth treatment. The treatment continues for as long as the condition is becoming better and may last for up to 12 months. The treatment works from the outer to the inner part of each spot, so that to achieve full repigmentation.

About the author:

Εξειδικευμένος στην Αγγλία (Οξφόρδη, Λονδίνο) και Βόρεια Αμερική ( Ν.Υόρκη, Σαν Ντιέγκο) στην LASER Δερματολογία και πρωτοπόρος στην εφαρμογή των εξελιγμένων LASER στην Ελλάδα. Ίδρυσε τα πρώτα και πλέον εξοπλισμένα ενδονοσοκομειακά τμήματα LASER Δερματολογίας στην Ελλάδα, στο Ιατρικό Αθηνών στο Μαρούσι, στην Κλινική Αγίου Λουκά Πανοράματος Θεσσαλονίκης και στο Διαβαλκανικό Θεσσαλονίκης. Υπήρξε Διευθυντής Επεμβατικής και LASER Δερματολογίας του Ιατρικού Κέντρου Αθηνών επί 18 χρόνια, από το 1996 έως το 2014. Συντάκτης πλήθους εργασιών και δημοσιεύσεων με προβολή σε διεθνή και ελληνικά επιστημονικά περιοδικά, αλλά και σε διεθνή ξενόγλωσσα βιβλία. Συμμετοχή σε διεθνή και ελληνικά συνέδρια καθώς και πανεπιστημιακές κλινικές της Ελλάδας και του εξωτερικού, με ομιλίες και διαλέξεις. Δέχεται κατόπιν ραντεβού στα ιατρεία του στην Βας. Σοφίας 49 – Αθήνα, και στην Λεωφ. Κηφισίας 71 – Μαρούσι.

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