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Eur Radiol. 2004 Jun;14(6):1063-73. Epub 2004 Mar 26.

Interstitial photodynamic laser therapy in interventional oncology.

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Department of Diagnostic and Interventional Radiology, University of Frankfurt, Theodor-Stern-Kai 7, 63590 Frankfurt/Main, Germany.


Photodynamic therapy (PDT) is a well-investigated locoregional cancer treatment in which a systemically administered photosensitizer is activated locally by illuminating the diseased tissue with light of a suitable wavelength. PDT offers various treatment strategies in oncology, especially palliative ones. This article focuses on the development and evaluation of interstitial PDT for the treatment of solid tumors, particularly liver tumors. The PDT is mostly used for superficial and endoluminal lesions like skin or bladder malignancies and also more frequently applied for the treatment of lung, esophageal, and head and neck cancer. With the help of specially designed application systems, PDT is now becoming a practicable option for solid lesions, including those in parenchymal organs such as the liver. After intravenous treatment with the photosensitizer followed by interstitial light activation, contrast-enhanced computed tomography shows the development of therapy-induced necrosis around the light-guiding device. With the use of multiple devices, ablation of liver tumors seems to be possible, and no severe side effects or toxicities related to the treatment are reported. PDT can become a clinically relevant adjunct in the locoregional therapy strategies.

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