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theblueprint2004

ALA Photo Dynamic Therapy

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I am going to try the Photo Dynamic Therapy in 1 month and dont know if I should have my hopes up. Anyone tried it and worked for them or is it just a scam. Should I expect months of pain and down time for nothing or is this A knock out punch that will free me? the people from Celibre tell me that it works but , you know you cant trust many of them.

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I had a consultation about ALA PDT the other day and found out that it's basically a super-charged version of blue light therapy. They paint Levulon on your face so it'll soak into your pours and then put you under a blue light. Or at least, the place I went to used blue. The liquid is supposed to get the light to go beneath the skin. It could be good, but it's very expensive and it might irritate your skin. I decided I was better off with the home blue & red light lamp even if it takes longer, but it's a personal call. ;) Good luck.

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Guest ~Wolfy~

It can give good results about 30% of the time, another 30% it makes no difference, and the rest of the time you come off worse.

Blue/red therapy is more consistent; and has fairly good literature to support it. There's no big studies on photodynamic therapy at all.

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There is another discussion topic all about this, it is called "ALA photodynamic light therapy". It is very lengthy, but in my opinion it is well worth the read. A lot of info in there.

I have had two treatments so far. It has helped my skin, but I will not say that ALA + Blu-U is a waste until after treatment #3. Anyway, they say it takes two to three treatments to see good results. ( I have moderate/severe resistent/persistent acne) Depending on your skin type the will use Blu-U or the other (don't remembwer the name of the other). I am going to go for a third treatment in May.

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I am going to add pictures in the next couple of days. I don't have any pre-ALA pictures so I will start with post-ALA treatment#2 pics. then I will post pics after treatment #3 that way you can see what type of results I have had. I know that everyone will react differently to any treatment, but i am hoping that at least it will give you some idea of how it might work.

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yeah i actually am just NOW recovering from my second photo facial.. which is obviously No facial.. its painful and kills acne and helps scarring (supposedly) . But honestly guys.. im getting a little scared. my doc, this dude on fifth ave in nyc ( dr. paul jarred frank) was telling me how i shouldnt use antibiotics long term and made me stop them. so i did. now my acnes going crazy .... and as for the treatment my skin has honestly never been worse. he told me that i should expect it to be worse after the treatment .. but its been like 2 weeks and u kno what? its really not getting better. i am using the clinique cleansers.. so maybe its the switch or perhaps stopping the antibiotics. but i will add a better reply in a few weeks if i notice my acne is lessening. because honestly.. as much as i want to believe the whole aura surrounding this doc and his photo light gimic.. its just flat out not working for me. and the guy keeps going.. oh u need more and more treatment to really see a difference... if u have major acne.. i recommend accutane.. i mean dont even look at these photo light therapy things. BUT BUT BUT BUT.. if ure acne truly is moderate to light.. no joke.. this might help u. dont rule it out.. its just I am yet to see any difference.. after all the procedure is hella scary .. the guy goes... " oh u cant even walk out int he sunlight now.. ure ganan fry. i walked aorund the whole city lookin like i had a burqua over my head... gettin all these nasty looks...

i swear if this shit doesnt work.. imma break this guys face.

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Guest ~Wolfy~

There's no absolutely published studies on ALA, I cannot recommend that people avoid any and all treatments that lack experimental proof strongly enough.

This treatment gives all the bad warning signs:

a) expensive

b) unproven

c) bad side effects

d) low rate of success by people using it (much less than 50%)

e) large numbers of people report worsened acne

Avoid, avoid avoid.

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There's no absolutely published studies on ALA, I cannot recommend that people avoid any and all treatments that lack experimental proof strongly enough.

This treatment gives all the bad warning signs:

a) expensive

b) unproven

c) bad side effects

d) low rate of success by people using it (much less than 50%)

e) large numbers of people report worsened acne

Avoid, avoid avoid.

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I am finally posting photos of my results. unfortunately, I do not have any photos prior to me starting this treatment. I hope this gives everyone an idea of what you may experience, but I must say that everyone is different and what i experienced may be totally different from someone else.

I can onlly describe what I looked like before treatments. It basically looked like the first photo, only more cyctic, nodules along my jaw line, and I also had more red spots.

This first photo is post treatment #1:

ALA was on my face for 30 minutes + 15 min. Blu+U

post-53870-1179891338_thumb.jpg

post-53870-1179891338_thumb.jpg

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..based on them pics it looks like you have it more on your hair line down..? for the next treatment make sure that the light covers those areas as well..

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Below is part of my post from another thread a couple weeks ago on this treatment ..... then at the end is some follow-up on the situation that I provided for someone else ......

I ended up going to see Dr. Ava Shamban (whom I see someone else had mentioned in another thread) (she was the cosmetic dermatologist on Extreme Makeover, and was recommended by another reknowned dermatolgist in SoCal since he did not specialize in acne treatments). She and one of her consultants suggested PDT (and deep cleaning facial treatments) for my acne as my first priority, before I should consider Smoothbeam for any scars and fine lines (I had seen her for a consult on the combination of issues that bother me). She also advised that, yes, the Cetaphil could have caused the bumpy texture on my forehead. (I believe she was first going to suggest Accutane, but she asked if I had plans for becoming pregnant, and I told her it might be in the near future, so she decided against Accutane.) She did prescribe Bactrim as an oral treatment, along with NeoStrata Glycolic Wash 20%, Duac gel for my T-zone where I'm a little oily, and Metrogel for the rest of my face, and a moisturizer called Tolerane to use along with the Duac gel in case of overdrying.

I used the Bactrim and the topicals (Glycolic in AM & PM, and Duac + Metrogel in the AM) for the couple weeks before my appointment for the PDT, and my skin got way better before the PDT session.

I just had the PDT done about 5 days ago. I did have an allergic reaction to the Levulan, but I happened to still have some prescription meds left from my last allergic reaction, so I took that and mitigated the reaction (I would not do the Levulan again because apparently I am allergic to it - I got mild hives from it). Other than my allergic reaction to the Levulan, I would say the PDT was not bad. Well, the first few minutes in the lamp got ridiculously hot on some areas of the face, but then mellowed out. Afterwards, it looked like a bad sunburn, but didn't really hurt, except for a couple times it felt like I was being stuck with a needle in my cheeks or around my mouth. Overall, not as bad as I had anticipated. My face actually kind of felt numb even though it looked like it should be painful based on the redness (my cheeks were much more red than my forehead). About the second day after PDT my cheeks and around my mouth were leathery, thick and seriously dried/cracked. I could not open my mouth far enough to take bites from a sandwich because the skin would crack. Then the next day it started peeling and felt much less tight and less leathery. It has mostly peeled now. I do not have any red or swollen acne right now, but I am noticing tiny black dots, like maybe oil in some small pores on my chin and forehead - not serious at all though. However, this is only day 5 post-treatment, so I'll update the situation later. I am scheduled to go back in a few weeks to follow up to see if they recommend more treatment, plus to have the deep cleaning facial. Of course, if they do recommend another session I will decline merely because of my allergy to Levulan. Perhaps they'll have an alternative suggestion.

2 weeks after first PDT:

My skin texture is better than before (although, I have also been using the topical applications I indicated in my post, so I'm not sure if the improvement is from specifically the PhotoDynamic Therapy or the topicals, or the combo). The PDT definitely expedited and intensified the peeling to get rid of old skin and allow for new skin to surface. The Glycolic wash I use exfoliates, but to a much lesser degree. Anyway, I have NOT had any of the big pimples (pustules or whatever they are called) since I had the treatment (I do also take Bactrim once daily since seeing the dermatologist, so again not sure what to attribute the lack of outbreaks to). Anyway, I believe the treatment is worthwhile. My skin remained tanned looking for a couple weeks (except around the eyes where you will wear goggles). Now my skin has paled back to its usual fair color, and I seem to notice little scars more than I did before ... not sure. I would like to keep the slightly tanned look, so I'm thinking about buying one of the home blue/red light treatments, like the BeautySkin. I would imagine they would have a similar effect as the blue light from the dermatologist, without paying the high professional fees of office treatment; although the home treatment may have a lesser effectiveness. I think I was allergic to the Levulan anyway, so if I was to get another office treatment, it would likely be without the Levulan. I will ask the dermatologist her opinion on the BeautySkin type home treatment when I see her again in about 2 weeks. I have always thought that my skin looked healthier and had less outbreaks whenever I had been in the sun, so I think the blue light would be helpful that way, and without the damaging rays that the sun produces. Overall, I think the PDT is a real good jumpstart to clearing and refreshing the skin. I believe they typically recommend a few successive treatments of PDT, which my dematologist will address at my follow-up.

By the way - for my PDT treatment, the ALA (Levulan) was on my face for 60 minutes, and I was in the light for 12 minutes after that. The doctor will determine the amount of time, as each person is different. They put me in the light for 12 minutes and planned to check me at that point and consider putting me in a little longer, but after the first 12 minutes I was very red according to them (though I couldn't see the redness at that point) ... they thought 12 minutes was plenty for me and that I should get a good result based on my degree of redness. Several hours afterwards I definitely saw the redness.

5 1/2 weeks after PDT (and using Duac, Metrogel, Bactrim & AHA Glycolic wash):

Skin is still clear, texture and tone great!

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I actually have more pictures for post treatment 2 and 3, but it looks like I can one post one pic. Does anyone know how I get post the others?

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Today I had my second ALA treatment.

The first one I had was a breeze. I finally got to see a dermatologist this year and she put me on bactrim. After a few months on Bactrim I was really clearing up. All the cystic acne around my chin area had disappeared. I still had some inflammation however and clogged pores. I was hoping that ALA treatments would help with clearing me up even more. The first treatment was good. I didn't feel any pain. The rubbing of your face with acetone isn't great. It didn't hurt though. They used a stick filled with the levulan acid all over my face and let me sit with it for 30 mins. My skin didn't feel a thing. When they put me under the light I didn't feel anything either. Just a little bit of warmth. I was able to go up to 15 mins which is the max amount of time under the blue light. I had to wash my face and lather on a good amount of sunscreen then completely shield my face from the sun on the way home. I put a blanket over my head and went to sleep. I stayed indoors for two days, not fun, but my skin healed well because of it. I was only red, my face didn't peel at all. I was fine after three or four days.

Post first treatment: My skin is much smoother and it got rid of a lot of the inflammation. I've been getting a lot of compliments on my skin and I haven't had one breakout. I went back to my dermatologist and she said I won't have to see her again, unless I start breaking out again, since the treatment went to well. I had two more to go. She also prescribed me retin-a and clindamycin to use everyday. They've both helped my skin post treatment.

Second ALA treatment: (today) Well I stopped the retin-a three days prior to the treatment like I was told, but my skin was still super sensitive. Everything sort of hurt. The acetone stung and the levulan acid did too, but the pain faded pretty quickly. I sat this time for 45 mins and I wasn't in pain at all. The light hurt a little this time. I was only able to last 10 mins but I definitely felt a warm sensation and some tingling. I was noticeably red afterwards and a little sore. Right now, I appear to have a bad sunburn. It's not uncomfortable though. You really have to have a low threshold for pain if you can't handle something like this. A sunburn isn't fun, but it's nothing you can't stand for a few days. I already know my skin is going to peel within the next few days. This treatment was a little harsher than the first. I am happy though that I have gone through with ALA. I have one more treatment to go.

I definitely recommend ALA treatments. The nurse has been taking polaroids of my progress and there is a huge difference I can see. I expect to be 100% clear after the final treatment and I will post the results.

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Celibre on Photodynamic Therapy. We believe that PDT with amino levulanic acid is a great option for those struggling with acne, especially if you've tried over the counter products, anitbiotics and/or accutane with little results. We also see a lot of patients that have tried accutane and do not want to be on it again.

But we would caution that we do not provide a "knock ut punch" for anyone that comes in with an acne condition. We set the eexpectation that 70% - 80% of our patients respond well to our program, but everyone does not. The issue is that there is no cure for acne and what works for one person often does not work for the next, which is why so many treatments exist. We try to set realistic expectations like this in every one of our consultations about photodynamic therapy. To learn more, visit the website at www.celibre.com

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