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Without a doubt, a skin cancer diagnosis can feel scary and confusing. But with early detection and the right dermatologist by your side, finding a comprehensive and effective skin cancer treatment plan is certainly achievable.
At Cumberland Skin Surgery and Dermatology, we offer many skin cancer treatments, including cryosurgery. Keep reading to learn more about cryosurgery and how we use it to treat superficial skin cancers.
What is Cryosurgery?
Cryosurgery is a skin cancer treatment that uses liquid nitrogen to freeze and destroy cancer. This treatment uses a cotton-tipped applicator or spray device to administer the liquid nitrogen. There is no cutting or bleeding involved, and anesthesia is not required.
To receive best results, the procedure may need to be repeated several times within the same session to ensure the destruction of all malignant cells.
Cryosurgery provides numerous benefits over other skin cancer treatment. Firstly, cryosurgery destroys and eliminates malignant cells without invasive cutting or incisions, thus there is no bleeding. Also, anesthesia is not required, and the procedure is relatively painless.
Additionally, the post-procedure healing process is quite short; the growth becomes scabbed and typically falls off within just a few weeks.
Cryosurgery is effective at treating superficial skin cancers. It’s a suitable treatment for actinic keratoses (AKs) and superficial basal cell or squamous carcinomas. It is not an ideal treatment for skin cancers in cosmetically sensitive locations, such as the face, because it can leave scarring.
No, cryosurgery does not cause infertility. In rare cases, cervical cancer treatment using cryosurgery may cause cervical scarring but usually does not impact the ability to get pregnant or complications during pregnancy.
After most cryosurgeries, the patient can go home the same day. The cryosurgery healing process is relatively short, as the growth becomes scabbed and typically falls off within just a few weeks.
The side effects of cryosurgery are minimal but can include:
- Damage to nearby healthy tissue
- Loss of sensation if nerves are affected