Visible Light Part II. Photoprotection against visible and ultraviolet light

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Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology


Cutaneous photobiology studies have focused primarily on the UV portion of the solar spectrum. However, VL comprises 50% of EMR that reaches the earth's surface, and, as discussed in Part I of this CME, VL has cutaneous biologic effects such as pigment darkening and erythema. Photoprotection against VL includes sun avoidance, seeking shade, and the use of photoprotective clothing. Organic and inorganic UV filters used in sunscreens do not protect against VL; only tinted sunscreens do. In the US, these filters are regulated by the FDA as an over-the-counter drug and are subjected to more stringent regulations than in Europe, Asia, and Australia. There are no established guidelines regarding VL photoprotection. Alternative measures to confer VL photoprotection are being explored. These novel methods include topical, oral, and subcutaneous agents. Further development should focus on better protection in the range of UVA1 (340-400nm) and VL while enhancing the cosmesis of the final products.

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ePub ahead of print