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PUVA Therapy (cont.)

PUVA Therapy Treatment

About 60-90 minutes after ingesting the 8-MOP, the patient's skin is exposed to fluorescent bulbs emitting UVA light energy. The precise amount of light exposure is specified by a physician in units of energy. The length of time of the exposure depends on the intensity of light discharged by the bulbs which can vary significantly depending on the age of the bulbs. Modern PUVA boxes usually contain a device which monitors the amount of light energy to which the patient is exposed and will automatically end the treatment when the correct dose is attained. Initially, exposures generally last about 30 seconds and later can extend to as long as 20 minutes, depending on the patient's pigmentation and tolerance as well as the intensity of the UVA source. Exposures ought to occur no more often than every 48 hours in order to avoid burning. Generally, the amount of light to which the patient is exposed is gradually increased over the course of 30 treatments. Ultimately, the number of treatment exposures will depend on the patient's response to treatments.

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