Levulan – Actinic Keratosis and Acne

Levulan is a clear solution which applied to your skin after it has been cleansed and prepared with a microdermabrasion. The solution is left on the skin for an incubation period of 60-90 minutes. The Levulan is then illuminated with an appropriate light source, either Blu-U or Intense Pulsed Light (IPL).

Levulan is an advanced treatment for actinic keratosis (AK's) that have not yet become large and thickened. AK's appear as rough textured, dry, scaly patches that may often peel and reappear in the same spot. AK's are caused by excessive UV exposure, such as sunlight. AK's occur most frequently on the face, scalp, ears, neck, hands and arms. AK's take a long time to develop, and they generally appear after the age of 40. AK's are considered to be the first step in the development of skin cancer. When they are caught in this early stage, they are treatable and curable. When Levulan is applied to AK's, the solution is absorbed by the AK cells where it is converted to a chemical that makes the cells extremely sensitive to light. When the AK cells are exposed to the Blu-U or IPL, the light causes a reaction that destroys the cells.

For acne, Levulan works by selectively targeting the sebaceous glands that it is absorbed in to. It is then converted into a photosensitizer once it has been absorbed. The Blu-U or IPL illuminates the Levulan to start the photodynamic process. This process leads to shrinking of the sebaceous glands, which are the root cause of the formation of acne. Using this method to treat acne causes a reduction of acne lesions, smoother skin, less acne scars, less skin oil and minimizing of pores.