XTRAC laser therapy for psoriasis

I have recently undergone a 12-week course of treatment with the XTRAC UVB excimer laser for my plaque psoriasis, and results are amazing! I've been through conventional narrow-band UVB light therapy and have used all the topical steroids available.

Please see my comments about the therapy at this Youtube link, and I hope others find successful treatment! Happy Holidays, Chuck http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZAWKxdxlv4c

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I just found out there is a doctor in my area who does this laser therapy. I might check into it early next year. Does look like an interesting and promising option.

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Hi! I highly recommend it! There are a few tips I can offer to you that might help maximize the treatment:

(a) have your Vitamin D level checked by your doctor, and if low, take a suitable OTC supplement. Many of us are Vitamin D deficient because our diet lacks the vitamin or we don't get enough sunlight, and healthy skin needs Vitamin D for growth & healing! I was VERY deficient & now take 5,000 IU of Vitamin D3, one capsule per day. Be sure to consult with your M.D. as too much Vitamin D can have side effects.

(b) take baths once or twice per week in Dead Sea Salts. They help to loosen the plaques, and the minerals (potassium, calcium, and magnesium) help the healing process. I buy a certified salt, "Minera," from the San Francisco Salt Company, www.sfbsc.com

(c) moisturize!! Be sure to keep plaques moisturized every day and night, especially after bathing/showering. My dermatologist has me use a product called Mavena with Magnesium, it is excellent! A bit expensive, but a little bit goes a long way.

Good luck, I hope it works as well for you as it did for me!

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Thanks, Chuck!!

Yes, went to dermo today. They push the corticosteroid creams. Wants me to try a new one even after I told him I flare up worse after using them. They really don't have a clue about diet and using vitamin D, fish oil, etc. I even told the doctor healing needs to come from within with better diet, etc. Ugh!! Hence, frustration again! He recommended use of baby oil on plaque spots before using stand up tanning booth 3X a week so the rays better penetrate. I found baby oil with aloe and vitamin E in it (no water added). We all know aloe is supposed to be good!!

I mentioned the laser therapy to this doctor. He replied with absolutely nothing. I know this will financially be out of reach for me anyway. He said he might think about prescribing narrowband UVB in the future. I hope so!! I think his office still uses UVA treatment with the drug that makes your skin more photosensitive. Not doing that!!

I will look into purchasing those sea salts also. I would think that would be beneficial for plaque psoriasis. ;)

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I am currently undergoing XTRAC UVB excimer laser treatments on my hands. Tonight is treatment number 10. I am noticing that there arent as many plaques, and i dont have that serious dryness as i did before.
One of the laser techs rubs mineral oil on my palms before the treatment, she said it helps the laser penetrate better. The other does tech not. Either way I have faith that this will help in the long run and i will post about it here.
dmc-1963. The laser is great for small areas, i am affected on my palms only (so far). The techs told me someone comes in and it takes over 1 hour to do hers. She has scalp plaques.

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Hi jims001!

Best of luck to you with this laser treatment. I would love to pursue it, but financially I believe it will be out of reach for me since I don't have very good insurance. The mineral oil thing makes sense. I have to start using baby oil (mineral oil) before I use the stand up tanning booth. The rays will be able to penetrate better. ;)

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Chuck, let us know exactly how much sea salt to add per bath. I see on the website it has guidelines. I only fill my tub halfway. It would be a little expensive to use 2 pounds per bath 2 times a week. What does 2 pounds equal? 1 cup, 2 cups?? I did check out that San Francisco company like you recommended, but want to see what you have to say first before I order! :)

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Hi! Sorry about the Doc pushing the corticosteroids, that is their usual response. Many of these (halobetasol, clobetasol etc.) are considered "super-potent," and using them for long periods of time can have serious side-effects such as thinning of the skin and suppression of the hypothalamus etc. (HPA Axis suppression). However, they can also be effective when used properly.

The reason that oils are used before any light treatment (narrow-band UVB light booth, Excimer laser etc.) is that the oil makes the dead skin more transparent, allowing better penetration of light. It's like the old grade-school trick of putting a drop of oil on a piece of white paper & holding it up to the light (which is how American colonists used to make window panes, or so I was told when I was about 7!)

Psoriasis seems to be a very individualized disorder, influenced by our own genetics, diet, weight etc. So, outcomes will vary. And, the stuff will keep coming back, it is a lifelong condition since our immune systems are so strong! The best we can work for is a high level of control until something better comes along.

The XTRAC worked VERY well for me, please see this article in the Wall Street Journal that quotes me and my dermatologist, Dr. Amy Forman Taub: http://online.wsj.com/article/PR-CO-20111129-906304.html

Her advice is right on the money! Take care, Chuck

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I'm glad to hear such positive results! Thank you for sharing! :)

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What is the cost of the treatment ?

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Hi, SSV! Good question, I don't really know because I entered a contest sponsored by Photomedex called "Itching to Win," and the first prize was a complete course of treatment (12 sessions) at no cost. I believe the cash value of this prize is around $5,000 or so.

I had quite a bit of skin to treat, so a less-involved case (scalp psoriasis, less lesions etc.) would probably cost less.

I've seen Photomedex offer some coupons & rebates, so if you do not have insurance coverage, discuss this with them and your dermatologist. It appears that many insurance companies will now pay for this therapy.

I hope this helps! Compared to the YEARS I spent in twice/week UVB light-box treatment, there is no comparison!!

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Please keep all of us posted with results.
I too look into this with one office but they were waaay too pushy so I am looking for another derm who uses this treatment.

I did read in one med. journal, a pregnant ppp patient seeing great success with this.

Currently using tanning bed with some success but not completely under control or clearance. Just shorter blister cycle.

I really hope this works for you!

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Hi,
Just want to Know about what is tanning bed ?
How does it help for P ?

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Hi SSV! A "tanning bed" uses fluorescent lamps to "bathe" the entire body with ultraviolet light radiation. This is a good article from the World Health Organization:

http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs287/en/

I do not recommend anyone attempt light-therapy on their own, since it is easy to accumulate enough UV exposure to significantly raise your risk of skin cancer. Only engage in UV treatment with the advice of your dermatologist.

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