Photodynamic Therapy in Head and Neck Cancer

March 24, 2014
Hassan Arshad, MD

Hassan Arshad, MD, assistant professor of oncology, head and neck surgeon, Department of Head and Neck Surgery/Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Roswell Park Cancer Institute, discusses a new study that will be evaluating a new approach to photodynamic therapy in patients with head and neck cancer.

Hassan Arshad, MD, assistant professor of oncology, head and neck surgeon, Department of Head and Neck Surgery/Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Roswell Park Cancer Institute, discusses a new study that will be evaluating a new approach to photodynamic therapy in patients with head and neck cancer.

Clinical Pearls:

  • In classic photodynamic therapy, a photosensitizer is injected into a patient or is topically applied. The photosensitizer is selectively taken up by cancer cells.
  • A light of a specific wavelength is then applied to the site. This kills the cancer but reduces the damage to the surrounding tissue.
  • If the tumor is too deep, the light will not be able to reach it.
  • This study will evaluate a new approach where the light delivery device is placed directly into the tumor.