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The effectiveness of photodynamic therapy using pulsed sources was evaluated using a mathematical model describing the time-dependent excitation and de-excitation of the photosensitizer molecule. Using the various numerical data available in the literature on haematoporphyrin we calculated that the effectiveness of pulsed excitation in PDT is identical to that of CW excitation for peak fluence rates below 4 × 10 8 W m −2 . Above this threshold the effectiveness drops significantly. In practicedoi:10.1088/0031-9155/41/5/002 pmid:8735252 fatcat:dyvhc5ktj5fkjn7t2wmlcv7sxu