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What You Should Know About Immunosuppressant Drugs and Red Light Therapy:
















Immunosuppressant drugs are used to suppress the immune system when it mistakenly attacks healthy cells and tissues in the body and they reduce the risk of transplanted organs being rejected. Immunosuppressants block the body’s ability to produce certain proteins that cause inflammation and tissue damage. Immunosuppressants can lower immunity, which increases the risk of infection.


It’s important to reduce inflammation to help alleviate the symptoms associated with autoimmune diseases and to improve the quality of life for those managing those symptoms.


A few issues that can arise with autoimmune disease:


  • Various organs and systems are affected, which can lead to a wide range of symptoms, complications, including photosensitivity.

  • In some cases, the treatment for autoimmune diseases may require the use of immunosuppressants to suppress or modulate an overactive immune response.

  • Increased risk of skin cancer.


Avoiding Red Light Therapy When Prescribed Immunosuppressants:

Red Light Therapy, also known as Photobiomodulation (PBM), is non-invasive, is cutting-edge, and uses low-level red and near-infrared light to stimulate the body’s natural healing processes, making the cells produce more energy, improve circulation, and reduce oxidative stress. Immunosuppressants work to suppress the immune system while Photobiomodulation works to stimulate it. Therefore, Red Light Therapy is not recommended for patients who are actively taking immunosuppressants.


Interest in Red light Therapy has been increasing and research is ongoing, and it is important to know that immunosuppressants interfere with the body’s natural healing process and can make the effects of Red Light Therapy less effective. Make sure to discuss therapy options with your primary care provider before participating in a therapeutic plan involving this, or any other type of therapy when taking immunosuppressants.


Here are some cases in which you might be prescribed immunosuppressants:


  • Organ Transplant.

  • Stem Cell Transplant: Uses stem cells from your bloodstream, or a donor's bloodstream. This is the most common type of transplant.

  • Bone Marrow Transplant: Uses stem cells from your bone marrow, or a donor's bone marrow.

  • HIV and many other common and uncommon autoimmune diseases.


Here are some of the immunosuppressants that might be used for transplant recipients and other autoimmune diseases:


  • Prednisone, a corticosteroid used for Immunosuppression rejection and cellular rejection treatment.

  • Cyclosporine, a Calcineurin Inhibitor used given to prevent organ transplant rejection, and for immunosuppression maintenance.

  • Tacrolimus, a Calcineurin Inhibitor used post transplant for immunosuppression maintenance.

  • Azathioprine, an Anti-metabolite used for immunosuppression maintenance.

  • Mycophenolate mofetil, an Anti-metabolite used for rejection treatment and immunosuppression maintenance.

  • Sirolimus, used for malignancies, rejection treatment and immunosuppression maintenance.

  • Everolimus, Malignancies, rejection treatment and immunosuppression maintenance. with renal, kidney and liver transplants.

  • Alemtuzumab, for T-cell depletion, used to induce immunosuppression.

  • Azathioprine, given to prevent organ transplant rejection.

  • Hydroxychloroquine, for arthritis and lupus.

  • Methotrexate for Rheumatoid Arthritis, where the body is attacking its own joints, psoriasis (where the body attacks its own skin), and certain types of cancers (to slow the growth of that cancer).

  • TNF inhibitors such as Etanercepts, Infliximab, and Adalimumab.


Remember, combining Red Light Therapy with immunosuppressant medication can interfere with the intended effects of these medications and compromise their efficacy.


As with any new therapy plan for your health and wellness, it’s important to find the therapeutic methods that fit you best. The Wellness Center is dedicated to providing the best light therapy available. If you are not taking immunosuppressants, and have been cleared by your primary medical provider to move forward with Red Light Therapy, we are here to help!


A.J. Harewood


Contact The Wellness Center today to explore your options to start feeling better! We’re here to help!


Visit our YouTube Channel to see our Podcasts, Testimonials, and more information on Red Light Therapy today!


The information contained in this article, and information curated from third-party links are for informational purposes only and should not be used or interpreted as diagnosis or medical advice. It is your sole responsibility to consult with your medical doctor regarding any therapy plans or complementary care you might be considering for your personal medical care.


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