Phototherapy, also known as light therapy or narrowband UVB (ultraviolet B), is a specialised treatment used for treating various skin conditions.


What is it for?

Phototherapy is most commonly used to treat psoriasis and is particularly effective for the guttate type of psoriasis. (For further information on psoriasis and its associated conditions, you may find the following links useful: Australasian College of Dermatologists and Psoriasis Australia.)

Other skin disorders that can be treated using phototherapy include eczema and skin lymphoma.

Phototherapy is considered to be a very effective treatment that uses light wavelengths from the ultraviolet part of the sun’s spectrum and avoids the other wavelengths present in natural sunlight. We have a top-of-the-range Waldmann phototherapy unit for full-body treatments and a separate machine for the hands and feet.

Phototherapy treatment courses usually require frequent visits to the clinic, up to three times weekly, so these treatments are bulk-billed. Each person is unique and so is their condition, so it cannot be predicted exactly how long it will take to treat a particular person.

What should I expect during the procedure?

Phototherapy treatments are quite quick, and take only a few minutes per treatment.

Although not much preparation is required, you still need to tell your dermatologist about any medications or over-the-counter drugs that you’re taking or may have changed between visits. Anticancer medications and certain antibiotics can make your skin oversensitive to UV light.