Drug-Induced Photosensitivity and the Major Culprits

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Photosensitivity is a condition that occurs when sunlight or artificial forms of radiation interact with a medication to produce an adverse cutaneous drug eruption. This adverse reaction may increase the incidence of skin cancer and can be prevented with proper counseling. There are 2 major types of photosensitivity: phototoxic reactions, which occur when an individual is exposed to both high doses of medication and radiation, and photoallergic reactions, which require an immune-mediated response. Several classes of drugs are commonly implicated in photosensitivity reactions, including tetracyclines, floroquinolones, sulfonamides, diuretics, phenothiazine antipsychotics, and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. This review will discuss photosensitivity reactions, the most commonly reported photosensitizing agents, and treatment and prevention measures for the condition.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)189-191
Number of pages3
JournalAmerican Journal of Lifestyle Medicine
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 1 2013

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Health Policy
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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