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Sari M. Fien and Allan R. Oseroff

Photodynamic therapy (PDT) involves the administration of a photosensitizing drug and its subsequent activation by light at wave-lengths matching the absorption spectrum of the photosensitizer. Because the skin is readily accessible to light-based therapies, PDT with systemic and particularly with topical agents has become important in treating cutaneous disorders. Topical PDT is indicated for treating actinic keratosis, superficial or thin non-melanoma skin cancer, including some cases of nodular basal cell carcinoma, and some cutaneous lymphomas. Advantages of aminolevulinic acid/methyl aminolevulinate PDT include the possibility of simultaneous treatment of multiple tumors and large surface areas, good cosmesis, and minimal morbidity, such as bleeding, scarring, or infection.

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Stanley J. Miller, Murad Alam, James Andersen, Daniel Berg, Christopher K. Bichakjian, Glen Bowen, Richard T. Cheney, L. Frank Glass, Roy C. Grekin, Dennis E. Hallahan, Anne Kessinger, Nancy Y. Lee, Nanette Liegeois, Daniel D. Lydiatt, Jeff Michalski, William H. Morrison, Kishwer S. Nehal, Kelly C. Nelson, Paul Nghiem, Thomas Olencki, Allan R. Oseroff, Clifford S. Perlis, E. William Rosenberg, Ashok R. Shaha, Marshall M. Urist, and Linda C. Wang