Artificial Light Sources for Phototherapy

  • E. Hölzle
Conference paper


UV-irradiation for medical applications is generated either by high pressure lamps with mercury, xenon, and metal-halides as additives or by low-pressure fluorescent bulbs.

These UV-sources are built in different types of irradiation apparatuses depending on the clinical use of the equipment. UV-lamps may be designed for local treatment of parts of the body or whole body exposures. For the later purpose lie-downunits (sunbed-type) or stand-up units (cabins) are available.

Depending on indications for phototherapy special wavebands are selected and UV-sources are constructed accordingly. Broad-band UVA from fluorescent or high pressure lamps at low doses (2-10 J/cm2 ) are used to treat pruritus, prurigo, atopic dermatitis, polymorphous light eruption, and are employed for photochemotherapy (PUVA). Long-wave UVA (UVA1) from high pressure lamps at medium or high doses is suitable to treat acute exacerbations of atopic dermatitis. Granuloma anulare and urticaria pigmentosa probably represent further indications. Broad-band UVB from high pressure or fluorescent lamps serves to treat psoriasis, parapsoriasis, pruritus and polymorphous light eruption. Indications for narrow-band UVB(311 nm) are psoriasis, polymorphous light eruption and atopic dermatitis, the latter in a subacute or chronic state.


Atopic Dermatitis Acta Derm Body Exposure Granuloma Annulare Artificial Light Source 
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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1997

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  • E. Hölzle

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