Photodynamic therapy (PDT) is a two-part process that uses a combination of lasers and drugs to treat lung and esophageal cancers. The first step involves injecting the patient with a photosensitizing drug selectively absorbed by cancer cells. During surgery – typically two days after the injection – the surgeon inserts an endoscope carrying a flexible quartz fiber and places it near the tumor. When the laser is turned on, the light activates the toxic properties of the photosensitizing drug, killing the cancer through a chemical reaction.
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