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the therapeutic use of sunlight or optical radiation, including infrared, visible, and ultraviolet radiation; a branch of physical therapy. Luminous energy’s effect on man is determined by its intensity (strength of the source and distance to the irradiated surface), by the duration of irradiation, and by the penetration depth of electromagnetic waves. The penetration depth, which depends on the light-wave length, is greatest with infrared and visible rays and least with ultraviolet rays. Erythema, that is, redness of the skin, may appear a few minutes after irradiation, for example, by infrared rays, or two to eight hours after exposure to ultraviolet rays. The intensity of the skin reaction varies with such factors as age, the time of year and the sensitivity of the skin in different parts of the body to different kinds of rays. It can change with some pathological conditions and after the ingestion of certain medicinal substances. The irradiated area acquires a tan in three to four days.

Thermal and luminescent artificial light sources are used in phototherapy. Thermal sources include incandescent lamps that emit infrared and visible rays, general and local light baths, Minin lights, and infrared rays. The quantity and composition of the energy released by these sources depend on the temperature of the radiating body. Luminescent sources, in which radiation is achieved by electrical, chemical, and other processes, include mercury-vapor lamps, luminescent erythematous lamps, and arc bactericidal lamps.

Ultraviolet irradiation, both local and general, is used to compensate for an ultraviolet-radiation insufficiency and to increase resistance to various infections, for example, influenza. It is used as an analgesic and antiphlogistic in treating diseases of the joints, the peripheral nervous system (neuritis, neuralgia, radiculitis), the muscular system (myositis), and the respiratory system (bronchitis, pleurisy), as well as in treating skin diseases, gynecologic and metabolic disorders, and some forms of tuberculosis. Ultraviolet irradiation is used in pediatrics in preventing rickets and acute respiratory diseases, in increasing the body’s defensive mechanisms against rheumatic fever between attacks, and, together with antirheumatics, in treating rheumatic fever during its acute phase. Thermal procedures and visible and infrared rays are used as analgesics and resorption agents primarily in treating subacute and chronic inflammatory diseases, neuralgia, and muscular pains.

Phototherapy is contraindicated in treating the active form of tuberculosis, neoplasms, pronounced heart failure, the second and third stages of hypertension, acute exhaustion, increased thyroid function, renal disease and insufficiency, and photopathy (a diseased condition caused by light).


References in periodicals archive ?
The Clarify Mobile App syncs to a proprietary, lightweight handheld device which guides patients through delivering targeted narrowband UVB phototherapy treatments for their specific skin condition.
Among the available therapies, narrowband ultraviolet B (NB-UVB) phototherapy is considered as the 'gold standard' for the treatment of diffuse vitiligo due to its simplicity, safety and efficacy.
A separate study evaluated the use of phototherapy in 18 children with PLC for a mean of 3.
3%) required no interventions, while a few required phototherapy alone (19.
2008) determined that between 5% to 10% of all newborns will require treatment with phototherapy for significant hyperbilirubinemia.
Conclusions: The frequency of hypocalcemia is significant in the jaundiced neonates treated with phototherapy.
Because of its additional benefits intermittent phototherapy can be adopted as a routine procedure instead of continuous phototherapy in neonatal care unites.
Thus there is constant research going on to find a substitute for phototherapy or to lessen the duration of the same.
1%) received phototherapy according to the AAP 2004 guidelines (Table 1).
Phototherapy was performed using five special blue lamps with wavelengths 420-450 nanometers (Tusan Company, Tehran-Iran).
Phototherapy was administered thrice weekly (Monday Wednesday and Thursday) for group I and twice weekly (Tuesday and Saturday) for group II.
Wellness Center USA Inc (OTCQB/OTCBB: WCUI), a Schaumburg Illinois based healthcare and nutraceutical company, has announced today that it has signed a share exchange agreement with Psoria-Shield Inc, a Tampa Florida-based developer and manufacturer of UltraViolet (UV) phototherapy devices.