Irradiation with shortwave ultraviolet radiation is referred to as UVB phototherapy. The patient, undressed, stands in a specially built cabinet with fluorescent light tubes to treat the entire body.


What is UVB phototherapy

Traditionally, broadband UVB was utilized, but narrowband UVB phototherapy (311nm) is becoming more popular. Each exposure includes increasing UVB doses (three to five times weekly until the skin condition has cleared, has failed to respond, or a pre-determined maximum number of treatments). The goal is to tint the skin a faint shade of pink without burning it.

Are the adverse effects of UVB phototherapy?

Sunburn may develop, with the severe symptoms appearing 8 hours following treatment. This will fade over the next few days and should be addressed with emollients on a regular basis.

UVB has effects that are similar to those of sun exposure. Excessive sun exposure causes skin to age and increases the risk of skin cancer.

Instructions for patients choosing UVB phototherapy

  • Keep all of your appointments. Allow time for adjustments.
  • Inform the personnel of any health issues you may have, such as eye problems.
  • Please inform the staff if you are taking any drugs. Some may increase your risk of burning.
  • Except as recommended by your doctor or UVB staff, do not use any ointments or cosmetics (particularly perfumes and coal tar products).
  • On both treatment and non-treatment days, avoid natural sun exposure.
  • Before beginning treatment, apply a broad-spectrum sunscreen to your face and hands.
  • Cover male genitalia; UV rays should not be allowed to reach this area.
  • Make an appointment with your dermatologist on a regular basis.

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