Cryotherapy is a technique that utilizes extreme cold to treat certain skin disorders. The agent that is most effective and used most frequently is liquid nitrogen. Liquid nitrogen has a boiling point of-195.6°C
How it works?
Freezing the tissue results in formation of ice crystals within. This dehydrates the cells and when ice melts, there is some swelling of tissue. The blood vessels that feed the growth get frozen and the blood supply to that portion gets cut off. Thus the targeted area becomes crusted and sheds off or shrinks drastically in size.
Where it works?
  • Warts
  • Molluscumcontagiosum (viral growths on the skin, similar to warts)
  • Skin tags (Small dangling growths of skin on the neck and armpits)
  • Xanthelasmapalpebrarum (yellowish-white deposits of fat around eyelids)
  • Keloids
  • Many other benign growths on the skin
What to expect?
When liquid nitrogen is applied to skin, there is some stinging, burning pain that lasts for approximately 5 minutes. In most situations, the pain is bearable and local anaesthesia is not necessary. However, the comfort levels can be increased by application of an anaesthetic cream called EMLA one hour prior to the procedure. An adherent dressing potentiates the effect of EMLA.

The treated area looks red and slightly swollen after the procedure. This lasts for a day. On the 3rd or 4th day a crust forms on the area that may separate off after any time between 1 to 4 weeks depending on the intensity of freezing. The beauty is that new skin starts forming underneath the treated area within 72 hours. So when the treated area falls off, there is normal skin underneath.

There are no permanent marks or scars left behind after cryotherapy. However, the area may appear darker or paler than surrounding skin for a few days or weeks, but quickly matches the original skin.
Cryotherapy - Gallery