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A Journal on Dermatology

Journal of Istituto Dermatologico San Gallicano
Official Journal of the Associazione Dermatologi Ospedalieri Italiani - A.D.O.I.
Indexed/Abstracted in: EMBASE, Scopus



Esperienze Dermatologiche 2010 June;12(2):95-8

language: English, Italian

Combined methyl aminolevulinic acid and photodynamic therapy for chronic lower leg ulcers

Misciali C., Baraldi C., Burtica C., Fanti P. A.

Dipartimento di Medicina Interna, dell’Invecchiamento e Malattie Nefrologiche, Sezione di Dermatologia e Venereologia
Università di Bologna, Bologna


Chronic ulcers refers to skin lesions which for a number of reasons do not heal within 6 to 8 weeks. Venous ulcers, the most common ulcers of the lower limbs, affect 0.5-1% of the population in Western countries, with a peak incidence occurring in the seventh and eighth decades of life. These slow-healing ulcers are associated with significant morbidity and reduced quality of life in those affected with them. Venous ulcers usually arise in the perimalleolar area and are not normally painful. They have irregular margins and are round or kidney-shaped; the bed may be cyanotic or yellow-fibrinoid in color. The gold standard of treatment is application of compression stockings on the affected limb. Alternative treatment includes autologous or homologous skin grafts, hyperbaric therapy, and photodynamic therapy (PDT). Here we present three clinical cases of venous ulcer and pressure ulcers refractory to previous treatment and subsequently treated with combined methyl aminolevulinic acid and photodynamic therapy (MAL-PDT). Cream MAL was applied to the lesion, the target area was covered with occlusive dressing for 4 hours, and then irradiated for 10 minutes using visible red light (630 nm).

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