Narrowband UVB: Dr. Kamil Al Rustom Skin & Laser Centre is very proud to be one of the very few clinics, counted on the fingers of one hand, that still cares about treating chronic recurrent skin diseases on the same level as performing aesthetic procedures.
And this care motivated Dr. Kamil Al Rustom to bring the photochemical treatment to his new clinic and provide the patients suffering with various diseases like Psoriasis, vitiligo, alopecia (areata, totalis, universalis), chronic eczema, skin lymphoma, Mycosis fungoides, morphea, and others, with an appropriate treatment.
Narrowband UVB is now the most common form of phototherapy used to treat skin diseases (2008). “Narrow-band” refers to a specific wavelength of ultraviolet (UV) radiation, 311 to 312 nm and it is considered the latest developed device of broadband source (290 to 320 nm).
This range of UV radiation has proved to be the most beneficial substitute of natural sunlight for psoriasis. Narrowband UVB may also be used in the treatment of many other skin conditions including atopic eczema, vitiligo, pruritus, lichen planus, polymorphous light eruption, early cutaneous T-cell lymphoma and dermographism.
This new narrowband UVB has these advantages:
• Exposure times are shorter but of higher intensity.
• The course of treatment is shorter.
• It is more likely to clear the skin condition.
• Longer periods of remission occur before it reappears.
This treatment presents an amazing solution for patients with more than 20% of the body surface area affected. At that stage of the disease, using creams becomes useless due to the large skin area, increasing the possibility of showing the side effect of these creams and the expenses involved in topical treatment.
Patients attend two to five times weekly. The patient is placed in a specially designed cabinet containing fluorescent light tubes.
The patient stands in the center of the cabinet, undressed except for underwear, and wears protective goggles. Usually the whole body is exposed to the UVB for a short time (seconds to minutes).
The amount of UV is carefully monitored. A number of protocols exist depending on the individual’s skin type, age, skin condition and other factors.
The skin may remain pale or turn slightly pink (the Minimal Erythemal Dose) after each treatment. Let your dermatologist know if you experience any discomfort.
Patches of psoriasis generally start to become thinner after five to ten treatments. Most patients with psoriasis require 15 to 25 treatments to clear.
For other diseases, it is almost the same number of sessions required to get good results.
Narrow-band UVB can result in burning resembling sunburns and for this reason our dermatologists will always prescribe our patients special creams and lotions and will advise them to avoid sun exposure as much as they can.
Long term exposure to ultraviolet radiation ultimately causes skin ageing and skin cancers. Although the risk from narrow-band UVB is unknown, research to date suggests it is no more risky than broadband UVB and probably less risky than photochemotherapy (PUVA).