What is Photodynamic Therapy About?

Also known for its other name, Photochemotherapy, Photodynamic Therapy (PDT) is a kind of treatment which involves the use of light and a kind of a special drug called the photosensitizing chemical substance complemented by molecular oxygen that evokes cell death (or phototoxicity), ideally towards cancerous cells. Apart from cancer cells, PDT has a proven ability to eradicate disease-causing microbial cells like bacteria, viruses, and fungi.

At Integrated Laser and Complementary Medicine (ILACM), it employs the use of Chlorin E6—a natural herbal composition professionally formulated by a reputable drug manufacturing company in Russia. With ILACM’s fairly new introduction of PDT in the country, it had already conducted various application of the treatment towards patients who require it. Unlike other means of medical treatment which requires admission as an in-patient, the use of PDT is applicable for out-patient who simply walks in into the clinic seeking treatment.

Overview of how Chlorin E6 works in the body:
• The photo-sensitizer is mixed with the saline solution (200 ml concentration) depending
on the patient’s weight.
• The solution is infused to the patient’s vein via canula for 30 minutes.
• After the first part is completed, it is necessary to wait approximately for one hour so
the solution can fully circulate in the patient’s body.
• Cancer cells treat the photo-sensitizer as food. The photo-sensitizer is infused to attract
the cancer cells.
• The photo-sensitizer is activated by laser light of a certain wavelength from
45 to 60 minutes.
• The transfer of energy generates singlet oxygen in one location where the light shines.
• As a result, the cancer cells are poisoned without harming surrounding tissues.


The therapy is beneficial due to its affordability, localized treatment, non-toxic outcome despite repeated treatment, and stimulation of immunity. The treatment is minimally invasive unlike surgery. Our clinical findings tell that time and time again, patients with these disorders have experienced noticeable improvement on the very first day of their respective PDT sessions.

What Does PDT Treats?

PDT applications in our clinics are used for the treatment of pre-cancerous disorders, age-related deterioration (like small skin spots), laser cosmetics, late stage cancer complementary approaches (palliative), and communicable diseases because of nominal invasiveness and selective remedial effects.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

How does PDT work?

PDT uses combination of a photoactive drug or photo-sensitizer (a drug that is activated by light) and red light from the laser machine. This allows the doctor to specifically target and destroy abnormal cells while limiting damage to surrounding healthy tissues.

What does it treat?

It is effective for certain kinds of cancers like breast, lung, esophagus, and cervix wherein the usual treatments are not appropriate. PDT can also relieve symptoms in patients in where the cancer obstructs the airway, or in which the cancer cells slightly invade surrounding tissues. It is extremely selective and focused.

What are the advantages of PDT?

It is free from surgical risks, severe impairment, and general complications. PDT sessions can be repeated many times as required. One PDT procedure facilitates treatment and fluorescent cancer diagnosis. Many patients show complete tumor absorption into the circulation of cells or tissue after a single session. This can be performed even under outpatient conditions.

Is it effective?

It was learned that PDT has been applied successfully using different photo sensitizers. This technique was utilized in the treatment of numerous malignant tumors. Some of these conditions include cancers of the skin, lower lip, tongue, mouth, larynx, lung, bladder, gastrointestinal organs, and genitals.

Does the laser light cause burning?

Low-power light from a laser is used, which is not the kind that is used for cutting in surgery. The light used in PDT is non-thermal which means it does not burn.

How does the doctor administer the laser beam?

The doctor will direct the light to its target through a fiber-optic. Fiber optics have been specially designed to conduct laser light which are thin, flexible, transparent strands, similar to fishing lines. In treating esophageal cancer, the fiber optic is passed down the throat through an endoscope, a flexible tube. In treating lung cancer, the fiber optic is passed through a bronchoscope, a tubular illuminated instrument used for inspecting or passing instruments into the lung airways.

Is PDT painful?

With this procedure, a sedative is given along with local or general anesthesia, so you should feel little or no discomfort during the procedure. Local swelling and inflammation in and around the treated area may cause physical discomfort in that area after the treatment.