Phototherapy and photochemotherapy of sclerosing skin diseases


Corresponding author:
Dr. Klaus Degitz
Department of Dermatology
Ludwig-Maximilians University
Frauenlobstraße 9-11
80337 München
Tel: +49 89 51606364
Fax: +49 89 51606372


The treatment of sclerosing skin diseases [systemic sclerosis, localized scleroderma, lichen sclerosus et atrophicus, sclerodermoid graft-vs.-host disease, scleredema adultorum (Buschke), scleromyxedema and necrobiosis lipoidica] is difficult and remains a great challenge. Numerous treatments, some with potentially hazardous side effects, are currently used with only limited success. The introduction of phototherapy and photochemotherapy for sclerosing skin diseases has considerably enriched the therapeutic panel and proven useful in a number of sclerosing skin diseases especially in localized scleroderma. Two phototherapeutic modalitites are used for the treatment of sclerosing skin diseases, long-wave ultraviolet A and psoralen plus ultraviolet A (PUVA). This article reviews current knowledge about the application of phototherapy and photochemotherapy to various sclerosing skin disorders.