A small amount of blood is removed from the patient (varies according to weight). The maximum amount of blood that is withdrawn is 1-1/2 cc per pound and it never exceeds 300 cc. An anticoagulant is added to keep it from clotting. The blood is then irradiated with U.V. light through a window in a closed air-tight circuit.
The blood is then returned to the patient.
The procedure is done sometimes once (in case of an acute viral infection) or multiple times. It can be used as much as two to three times per week for long periods in cancer and other immune system diseases.
The procedure that is being used today at Yale University by Dr. Richard Edelson and his staff to treat lymphoma is vastly different. Although they use ultraviolet light they irradiate the patient’s entire blood volume. In 1930’s, Dr. Knott found that if you irradiate too much of the blood volume you can cause the patient to go into shock.
The Yale therapy is called “photospheres” and the equipment is a refinement of that of Knott’s from the 1930’s. The main difference between the Yale technique and ours is:
- They separate the nucleated blood cells from the red blood cells in the plasma. It supposedly improves effectiveness.
- They irradiate all the patients blood.
- It costs $2000.00 per treatment.
- The filters in the instrument cost several hundred extra dollars and has to be replaced each time.
- They use photo-active drugs as well.
In summary, the Yale equipment is certainly an effective method, but the improved benefit to cost ratio for treating infections couldn’t be achieved since Knott attained almost 100% effectiveness with his earlier rendition of the equipment.