Q&A about blue light for acne treatment

Blue light acne

Blue light acne treatment, invented by Dr. Yoram Harth (He’s who started MDacne, too!) and his team in 1998, was the first drug-free treatment approved for the treatment of moderate acne. This treatment can be used by itself or in combination with topical anti-acne products. Blue light acne phototherapy is used in tens of thousands of physician’s clinics worldwide and by millions of users at home. Here’s everything you need to know about blue light acne treatment!

Question: What is it?

Answer: When the sebaceous cyst is clogged, it dilates allowing the p. acnes bacteria to proliferate in large amounts. These bacteria produce porphyrins that are a chemical compound sensitive to blue light. Acne phototherapy uses a special wavelength of light to destroy the bacteria that causes acne quickly and easily without causing any harm to surrounding tissue. When high-intensity blue light in a special wavelength (Around 425 nm) is delivered to the skin, a chemical reaction in the bacteria is triggered killing the bacteria.

Q: Is it effective?

A: Acne phototherapy is the fastest and safest treatment available for acne-prone skin. The first system to get FDA clearance for treatment of acne was Clearlight by Curelight Ltd. Studies in five continents have shown that CureLight’s violet/blue light effectively clears over 70% of inflammatory skin pimples in just a month.

Q: Are there any side effects?

A: Acne Phototherapy is among the safest skin treatments available. Acne phototherapy uses the violet/blue part of the spectrum and is UV free. There are no known side effects.

Q: Who can get the treatment?

A: Almost anyone! Acne phototherapy has been proven to be effective on mild to moderate acne. Pregnant women and women who are breastfeeding should consult their physician.

Q: Does it hurt?

A: With Acne phototherapy, a typical treatment session takes only 20 minutes. You sit or lie comfortably while the light is applied and the treatment’s relaxing. Most important: It’s painless and safe. Patients often listen to music or sleep while being treated.

Q: How many treatments are required?

A: Treatments typically involve a series of 8 sessions — once or twice a week. Improvement is typically observed after the fifth session. It’s important to keep the appointments recommended by your doctor in order to hit the bacteria at their peak of light sensitivity.

Q: What about home use acne phototherapy?

A: Acne phototherapy is based on the fact that light in a certain wavelength (Blue =425nm) reacts with a certain compound that the acne bacteria produce. The reaction between the light ad this specific compound produces another chemical that kills the bacteria. (porphyrins) start a chemical reaction that will destruct the bacteria. The first FDA cleared high-intensity Blue Light systems ClearLight/iClear By CureLight Medical) proved high efficacy in acne treatment. Unfortunately, most blue light anti-acne home devices emit a low intensity of blue light and thus provide low efficacy. Although they’re not as effective as clinic-based devices, they’re a good alternative.

Q: Why is the original ClearLight/iClear blue light phototherapy better that LED-based Acne Phototherapy?

A: The destruction of the bacteria will happen in the range of 420 to 450 nanometer and around 670nm. Nevertheless, the anti-inflammatory effect of the light will require light in the infrared range. It seems that the original Curelight systems are much more efficient in clearing acne than the newer LED-based systems. While LEDs emit only one exact wavelength of light, original ClearLight/iClear devices emit all required wavelengths, which enhances the results of the treatments.

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