Cryosurgery Q&A

What is cryosurgery?

Cryosurgery uses extreme cold to destroy abnormal tissue and cancerous cells in the treatment of basal cell and squamous cell skin cancers.

The team at A to Z Dermatology can also use cryosurgery to treat actinic keratosis, skin growths that can turn into cancer.

You might be a candidate for cryosurgery if you have existing health complications or a bleeding disorder that makes it difficult for you to have a more invasive procedure like surgery.

What happens during cryosurgery?

During cryosurgery, the dermatologists at A to Z Dermatology apply liquid nitrogen directly to the area of your skin where the abnormal cells are growing. The liquid nitrogen freezes the tissue and when it begins to thaw, the cancerous cells begin to die.

After your procedure, it’s common to experience side effects like:

  • Swelling
  • Blistering
  • Bleeding
  • Scarring

You may also lose some of the pigmentation and hair growth in the treatment area. There’s also a possibility that the cancer can return. In some cases, additional applications of liquid nitrogen are necessary to destroy all of the cancer.

The team at A to Z Dermatology provides medications to control any pain you have, and you need to clean the area several times a day. It’s normal for the wound to ooze fluids for a few days, but eventually, the area will crust over and fall off.

What are the benefits of cryosurgery?

Cryosurgery is a minimally invasive procedure that the A to Z Dermatology team performs in-office. You won’t need to stay in the hospital and will only need a local anesthetic to keep you comfortable. You can also expect to heal fully within six weeks of your treatment.

The dermatologists are also able to carefully control the amount of liquid nitrogen they put on your skin to minimize damage to the surrounding skin.

Cryosurgery is an effective option for skin cancer when other treatments aren’t working and can safely be a part of a treatment that involves other therapies.

To learn more about the benefits of cryosurgery for the treatment of skin cancer, call the A to Z Dermatology office nearest you or book a consultation online today.

Mesa Office


4540 E Baseline Road, Suite 109,
Mesa, AZ 85206