Photodynamic Therapy in AIDS-Related Cutaneous Kaposi's Sarcoma.

Hebeda, Konnie M.; Huizing, Manon T.; Brouwer, Patrick A.; van der Meulen, Freerk W.; Hulsebosch, Hendrik J.; Reiss, Peter; Oosting, J. (Hans); Veenhof, Cees H. N.; Bakker, Piet J. M.
Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes & Human Retrovirology:
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Summary: For evaluating the role of photodynamic therapy (PDT) in the local treatment of acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS)-related cutaneous Kaposi's sarcoma (KS), nine treatments were performed in eight human immunodeficiency virus-positive homosexual men. The patients received 2 mg Photofrin/kg and either 120 J/cm2 (n = 5) or 70 J/cm2 (n = 4) laser light (630 nm). A total of 83 lesions were evaluable for response with a follow-up of 3-8 months. The overall response rates by patient for all treated lesions were 50-100% (120 J/cm2) and 83.3-90.3% (70 J/cm2), with a median duration of 3 months (range, 2-6 months). Tumors located at the head had higher response rates than those at the trunk or extremities (p = 0.005 and p = 0.015 respectively). The size of the KS showed a negative relationship with the probability of complete response (p = 0.047). Local and general side effects occurred, including pain, blisters, temperature increase, muscle stiffness, and severe edema. The cosmetic result was unsatisfactory because of a high prevalence of scars and long-lasting hyperpigmentation. Although the response rates of PDT are high, light doses of 70-120 J/cm2 cannot be recommended in the treatment of cutaneous KS in combination with 2 mg/kg Photofrin because of severe side effects and unsatisfactory cosmetic result.

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