UV radiation in the self-treatment of skin conditions

Some people use UV radiation to self-treat skin conditions in addition to recreational use for tanning

Gatson and colleagues reported the case of a 22-year-old woman who used a tanning bed to treat a self-limiting drug hypersensitivity reaction. This resulted in a systemic toxic epidermal necrolysis-like reaction.

Immunohistochemistry was carried out on a skin sample from the patient and keratinocyte studies were performed. These revealed that the reaction could be triggered by UV-A radiation synergising with other stimuli such as interleukin-1, resulting in production of large amounts of TNF. Tanning bed exposure can therefore result in toxic epidermal necrolysis in addition to causing photodamage and skin cancer.
Gatson NT, Travers JB, Al-Hassani M et al. Arch Dermatol 2011

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