Cryotherapy is the use of extreme cold, in the form of
liquid nitrogen, to remove skin growths such as
This simple procedure usually takes less than a
minute and can be done in your doctor's office. Your doctor applies the liquid
nitrogen using a probe or a cotton swab, or he or she sprays the liquid
nitrogen directly onto the skin growth.
Cryotherapy can cause
moderate pain that can last up to 3 days. Healing is generally quick (7 to 14
days). Expect a blister to develop within hours after treatment. The blister
will dry up over the next few days, and the keratosis should fall off.
Cryotherapy causes little or no scarring, though some people,
particularly those with darker skin, experience permanent skin-color
lightening. Talk to your doctor to see if cryotherapy is right for
How this information was developed to help you make better health decisions.