Information for Light Patients
This information is only intended for patients that have been recommended for UVB phototherapy by a dermatologist. Phototherapy is given only under supervision of a dermatologist.
Your doctor has recommended that you start on UVB light phototherapy. This is not a tanning bed and is different from commercial tanning parlours. UVB phototherapy has been used for years and is scientifically proven to be of use in such conditions as psoriasis, eczema, itch and other skin conditions.
It is not necessary to make appointments, just come when we are open. When you come please tell the receptionist that you are here for light and you will be taken in right away, otherwise you may have to wait a long time.
Our hours are:
Monday to Friday 845 AM to 4:00 PM
Office closed between 12:00 and 1:00 PM
We are closed on holidays. You can come every day or only once a week. Generally, 2-3 treatments each week are recommended to get a good response. Generally, 20-30 treatments are needed before improvement is seen. If you come more often, you will get a quicker response. Try not to miss work or school.
Important Safety Tips for Patients
1. Always wear protective goggles during light therapy.
2. The amount of time you receive each treatment is always set by the Doctor or nurse. Do not set the time yourself and turn on the machine. The amount of time will be gradually increased, but if you miss more than one week, the time can not be increased.
3. Always stand about a foot away from the light machine and this distance needs to be consistent at every visit. For hands and feet, you can put them right up close to the light tubes.
4. If you are doing hands andor feet, please bring your own hand towel to shield your face from the light.
Risks of UVB light therapy
1. Burn: this presents as pain and redness the next day after treatment much like a regular sunburn. This means that you received too much time during your treatment. If a burn occurs, please tell the Doctor or nurse before your next treatment, as the next treatment may need to be delayed or the duration of treatment decreased. Sunscreens available in the office may need to be applied to the sites of burn.
2. Itchiness: this if often only temporary and will improve. In fact, UVB is often used to treat itch.
3. There is no proven significant risk of skin cancer associated with long term exposure to UVB light therapy. This is outlined in recent studies from Cancer 1994 June 1;73(11):2759-64 and J Am Acad Dermatol 1993 Dec; 29(6):1013-22.