The SolRx UVB Phototherapy Selection Guide

It’s easy, here are the things you need to consider:


Solarc Systems has created a comprehensive guide to help you select the best home phototherapy device for your needs. The guide takes into account various factors such as the skin disorder you have, the sensitivity of your skin to ultraviolet light, and more. With this guide, you can easily find the right device to treat your condition.

Table of Contents:

  1. What Skin Disorder Do You Have?
    • Psoriasis
    • Vitiligo
    • Eczema / Atopic Dermatitis
    • Vitamin-D Deficiency
  2. How Sensitive is Your Skin to Ultraviolet Light?
  3. SolRx UVB-Narrowband Devices
  4. Understanding Narrowband UVB Phototherapy

What Skin Disorder Do You Have?


psoriasis p icon1


For full body UVB-Narrowband treatment of psoriasis, the 1000‑Series 6 or 8 bulb models (1760UVB‑NB & 1780UVB‑NB) have become the most popular. Based on feedback from our after-sale follow-ups, they provide reasonable treatment times (1-10 minutes per side) and work well for most patients. For full-body psoriasis patients that require higher dosages, such as dark-skinned people or perhaps determined by experience from the phototherapy clinic, or for those that are not concerned with price, the 10-bulb 1790UVB‑NB is the premium choice, as is the new multidirectional and expandable E-Series, which offers the very highest performance. The E‑Series is unique in its ability to start as a super-economical 6-foot, 2-bulb, 200-watt panel, and then later be expanded by adding more 2-bulb devices to eventually surround the patient and provide so-called “multidirectional” phototherapy, which has geometrically better light delivery than flat-panel type devices. We performed a comparison test between flat-panel and multidirectional units, which can be seen here.

For full body UVB-Broadband treatment of psoriasis, because UVB-Broadband treatment times are of relatively short duration, the 4-bulb 1740UVB is usually adequate (the 1740UVB was the original SolRx device from 1992). The 6-bulb 1760UVB is a good choice if you might want to later change the bulbs to UVB-Narrowband. We suggest review of Understanding Narrowband UVB Phototherapy. UVB-Broadband devices are now far less common than UVB-Narrowband devices, but are still available from Solarc on a special order basis – please contact us for further details.

The 500‑Series model selection is now dominated by the powerful 5-bulb 550UVB‑NB, especially for hand & foot treatments, because thick skin needs higher doses, and the light output is more uniform at the recommended hand & foot treatment distance of 3 inches, which is quite close to the bulbs. The 3-bulb 530UVB‑NB may be a good selection for those with less severe disease and intentions to use the device only at the spot treatment distance of 8 inches. Consider the 2-bulb 520UVB‑NB for even less demanding cases or perhaps if there is a need to economize; for example, with a total of 72 watts of bulb power, a 520UVB‑NB still has 4-times the power of the 18-watt 100‑Series Handheld.

vitiligo v icon


Vitiligo doses are less than those for psoriasis, so vitiligo patients can sometimes use device models with fewer bulbs, such as an E-Series Master device, or the 520UVB‑NB / 530UVB‑NB. However, the devices with more bulbs will always minimize total treatment time, which makes it easier to follow the treatment regimen.

If vitiligo is spreading, Solarc recommends that a Full- Body device be used. Vitiligo is normally not treated with UVB-Broadband.

excema e icon

Eczema / Atopic Dermatitis

Treatment times for eczema / atopic dermatitis are in between those for psoriasis and vitiligo, so any number of bulbs could be chosen. Devices with more bulbs will decrease treatment times and make it easier to maintain your treatment schedule. Narrowband UVB can be very effective for the treatment of eczema.


How Sensitive is Your Skin to Ultraviolet Light?


In the mid 1970’s, Doctor Thomas B. Fitzpatrick, a Harvard dermatologist simplified the much older Von Luschan method to classify skin types and how they respond to ultraviolet light. This has become known as the Fitzpatrick scale and is used by dermatologists throughout the world.

Below are the different skin type descriptions. Choose the one that best describes you, but be reminded that sometimes skin type does not accurately predict the skin’s response to UVB light. For this reason, the SolRx treatment protocols provided in the User’s Manuals start with a low dose and gradually increase it as your skin adapts. It is important to not get burned.


Type I

Always burns, never tans


Type III

Sometimes burns, always tans


Type V

Rarely burns, tans easily


Type II

Always burns, sometimes tans


Type IV

Never burns, always tans


Type VI

Never burns, tans very easily

Knowing your skin type will help you choose how much device power you need. While most customers purchase the higher powered units to reduce their total treatment time, Type I or Type II (light skin) patients might consider the lower powered devices for more precise dosage control, or to economize. Type V or Type VI (dark skin) patients typically need maximum power. Information to determine your skin type is included in the SolRx User’s Manual. For even more information, see the detailed guide at the Canadian Dermatology Association.

How Much of Your Skin is Affected?


Skin diseases can involve just a few small patches, or for the unfortunate few, nearly the entire body. To cover this range, Solarc has developed four SolRx “Series” (each a medical device “family”), that vary predominantly in treatment area size, but also by features useful for treating commonly involved skin areas.

Within each SolRx Series are several “Models” that share the same basic construction and features, but differ in the quantity of UV bulbs (or in the case of the E-Series, the number of devices), and the wavelength of ultraviolet light they produce (UVB-Narrowband or UVB-Broadband).

All SolRx UVB-Narrowband devices come with everything you need to start taking your treatments, including the device itself with genuine Philips /01 bulbs, patient goggles, and a comprehensive User’s Manual with detailed exposure guidelines for psoriasis, vitiligo, and eczema.

The following diagrams and explanations will help you decide which SolRx device is best suited for treating your affected skin areas, with the blue highlights symbolizing typical skin area coverage. All SolRx devices share one common goal: to provide safe and effective UVB phototherapy in the patient’s home.

Full Body
Hand and foot shop v2

Let’s Look at the Two Full Body Device Families


Full Body

Solarc Recommends a 6‑foot High Full Body Device:


  • When there is a large percentage of affected skin,
  • When there are many small lesions evenly distributed all over the body,
  • When vitiligo is spreading (when the white patches are growing in size and number),


The wraparound E‑Series is expandable & multidirectional full-body system. This  full-body system rests on the floor and is fastened to the wall at the top.

E740 Hex 510

The SolRx E‑Series is our most popular device family. A narrow 6-foot, 2, 4, 6, 8 or 10-bulb panel that can be used by itself, or expanded with similar “Add‑On” devices to build a multidirectional system that surrounds the patient for optimal UVB-Narrowband light delivery. 12.5″ wide x 73″ high x 3.0″ deep. US$1195 to US$4895.

Four Reasons to Choose the E‑Series


Highest Performance

The E-Series is multidirectional. Devices that are angled to wrap around the patient are geometrically better at delivering UVB light around the body, which reduces the number of treatment positions and the total treatment time.


At any time expand your system with Add‑On devices to increase coverage and reduce your total treatment time, for example after you are fully convinced how well it works, or when more financial resources are available. Create a full booth if you want!


Most Portable Full Body

Within minutes, an E-Series assembly can be separated into robust individual 33‑pound twin‑bulb devices, each with two rugged carrying handles. Alternatively, pairs of devices can be folded together and fastened at all four corners to totally enclose all the bulbs in steel.


Lowest Cost Full Body

The E-Series Master device is the lowest cost full body device in the world. By itself it is totally capable of providing effective treatment, and especially if only low-dose phototherapy is needed. 



E series master

720 Master

US $1,195.00

740M Master

740 Master

US $2,095.00

E760M Master 1244

760 Master

US $2,395.00

Now Let’s Look at the Smaller Device Families


Hand and foot shop v2

When you only have to treat medium-sized areas such as your hands, feet, legs, elbows, knees, or face; and a full body device seems too big, the SolRx 500-Series is likely the best choice.

The immediate exposure area is 18″ x 13″ and the main lighting unit can be positioned to treat almost any skin area.

Four Reasons to Choose the 500‑Series Hand/Foot & Spot


The main lighting unit can be mounted on the yoke (cradle) and be rotated 360° to any direction for Spot treatment of medium-sized skin areas such as the elbows, knees, torso, and face. Or rotate the device to point down to treat the top of the feet. There are many possibilities.


Ideal for Hand & Foot Treatments

With its removable hood and powerful Philips PL‑L36W/01 lamps, it is ideal for hand and foot treatments; just like at the clinic, but in the privacy of your own home!


High Intensity UVB

With up to five powerful Philips PL-L36W/01 bulbs and 180 watts of bulb power, the 500-Series has the greatest UVB-Narrowband irradiance (light intensity) of all the SolRx devices. That reduces treatment times and is especially valuable when treating many different skin areas, or to penetrate thick psoriasis lesions on the hands and feet. 


Portability & Toughness

The 500-Series is built tough and designed to be moved around, with or without the yoke (cradle). It weighs 15 to 25 pounds. Just unplug it, grab it from the handle and go.



(5 bulbs)

US $ 1,695.00


(3 bulbs)

US $1,395.00


(2 bulbs)

US $1,195.00

And for Small Areas, Scalp Psoriasis, and Portability…



When you only have a few small areas to treat, or if you need to treat scalp psoriasis, the SolRx 100-Series Handheld is likely the best choice.

This powerful twin-bulb device has an exposure area that is 2.5″ x 5″ and several innovative features. And you can take it anywhere!

Four Reasons to Choose the 100‑Series Handheld

Highest Performance Handheld

The SolRx 100-Series has the greatest UVB‑Narrowband light intensity of all the handheld devices in the world, made possible by the use of two PL‑S9W/01 bulbs instead of just one, and a biocompatible, all‑aluminum wand with a clear acrylic window that can be placed in direct skin contact during treatment. More Power = Shorter Treatment Times = Better Results.  


Scalp Psoriasis

Keep your hairline clear by putting the wand in direct skin contact and pushing the hair up and out of the way. Or attach the optional UV Brush and move the hair out of the way with its 25 tiny cones so the UVB light has multiple pathways to reach the skin on the scalp.


Useful Features

No other handheld device has anything like our Aperture Plate System for precision targeting, or the option to quickly mount and dismount the wand onto a Positioning Arm for hands‑free use; a feature that clinics love.

The Ultimate in Portability

Everything you need to take treatments is neatly packaged in a high‑quality, USA made plastic carrying case that measures only 16″ x 12″ x 4.5″, and weighs only 8 pounds (3.6 kg). To take a treatment, just plug it in, put on the goggles, and grab the wand. Don’t be without your phototherapy – take it anywhere!


100 series 1


(2 bulbs)

US $825.00

It is important that you discuss with your physician / healthcare professional the best choices for you; their advice always takes priority over any guidance provided by Solarc.

A Physician’s Prescription is optional for International shipments, and mandatory for USA shipments.

For all USA shipments, a prescription is required by law per the US Code of Federal Regulations 21CFR801.109 “Prescription Devices”. 

Even if a prescription is not required, Solarc advises the Responsible Person to seek the advice of a physician, and ideally a dermatologist, because:

  • The physician’s diagnosis is needed to determine if UVB phototherapy is the best treatment option
  • The physician is in the best position to judge if the patient is likely to use the device responsibly
  • The physician plays a role in the ongoing safe use of the device, including regular follow-up skin exams

The prescription can be written by any medical doctor (MD) or nurse-practitioner, including, of course, your own General Practitioner (GP) – it does not have to be written by a dermatologist. Solarc uses the words “physician” and “healthcare professional” interchangeably to define this group.