Ultraviolet Blood Irradiation | What Is It And How Does It Work

If you are not familiar with ultraviolet blood irradiation (UBI), you are not alone. Popular in the 1940s, it fell out of use when other procedures were discovered. Today, however, ultraviolet blood irradiation is seeing a resurgence. Here's what you need to know. 

What is ultraviolet blood irradiation?

Ultraviolet blood irradiation, also known as ultraviolet blood therapy, is a treatment that uses ultraviolet light to destroy bacteria, viruses, and other pathogens in the blood. The treatment is similar to other types of ultraviolet light therapy, such as UV disinfection, which sterilizes surfaces and water.

What is ultraviolet blood irradiation used for?

Ultraviolet blood irradiation can be used to treat a variety of conditions, including bacterial infections, viral infections, fungal infections, and autoimmune disorders. A form of UBI is also used to treat some forms of skin cancer.

How does ultraviolet blood irradiation work?

During ultraviolet blood therapy, a small amount of blood is taken from the patient and exposed to ultraviolet light. Ultraviolet light kills bacteria, viruses, and other pathogens in the blood by damaging their DNA or RNA. The treated blood is then returned to the patient's body, where it can help fight infection or disease.

Are there any side effects of ultraviolet blood irradiation?

Ultraviolet blood irradiation is generally considered safe. Some people may experience side effects, such as fever, chills, nausea, fatigue, or skin rash. These side effects are usually mild and go away on their own.

Why did doctors stop using ultraviolet blood irradiation, and why are they using it again now?

Ultraviolet blood irradiation was popular in the 1940s and 1950s. However, it fell out of favor as newer, more effective treatments for fighting infections were developed. In recent years, however, there has been a resurgence in interest in ultraviolet blood irradiation as an alternative or adjunctive treatment for certain conditions, such as infections that are resistant to antibiotics.

When is irradiated blood needed?

If you have an infection or autoimmune disorder, your doctor may recommend ultraviolet blood irradiation. This is because UBI can help destroy the pathogens causing your illness. Likewise, if you have skin cancer, your doctor may recommend a form of ultraviolet blood irradiation called phototherapy. This treatment uses a photosensitizer, a type of light-sensitive drug, to destroy cancer cells.

If you think you might benefit from ultraviolet blood irradiation treatment, talk to your doctor about whether it is right for you. 

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