St Michael’s Street, Shrewsbury SY1 2HE  
The Lodge, Farley Road, Much Wenlock TF13 6NB
01743 590019

Medical Conditions

Medical Concerns

Medical Treatments

Medical Concerns

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Photodynamic Therapy (PDT)

Photodynamic therapy (PDT) is a modern treatment for certain types of non-melanoma skin cancer (NMSC) as well as precancerous skin lesions. Dr Murdoch has been treating skin cancer patient’s with PDT since 2001, soon after the light sources for this treatment became commercially available in the UK.

The treatment consists of applying methyl aminolevulinate (MAL or Metvix) cream to the skin lesion and 3 hours later, shining a pure red light on it. During the three hour period the methyl aminolevulinate in the cream is metabolised by skin cancer cells to produce a chemical called protoporphyrin IX (PPIX). The PPIX interacts with the red light and the body’s own oxygen to selectively kill the skin cancer sells.

During the light treatments which lasts around 8 minutes a stinging or burning sensation can be felt but for most patient’s this is easily tolerated. If the stinging sensation is too strong a local anaesthetic injection can be used. By itself the red light is harmless and causes no sensation on the skin.

PDT offers a non surgical alternative treatment for skin lesions. The number of PDT treatments will be dependent on the type of lesion that is being treated. Actinic keratoses usually require a single treatment of PDT but basal cell carcinomas and Bowen’s disease require two treatments one week apart.

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