The cool solution
Cryotherapy involves the application of very cold material to remove skin lesions.
What are some of the possible side effects?
Immediately after treatment, pain and swelling may occur for one to two hours. The treated site(s) then darkens (brown, brown-red, or even blue) within 24-48 hours. If the freezing is extensive enough, a blister (or blood-blister) may develop. If blistering is severe, the area may “weep” for several days.
Depending on which area of the body is treated, total healing can vary from one to three weeks In some cases, loss of pigment (skin color) in areas treated may occur, and this can take several months to recover fully. Rarely, full recovery may not occur.
Occasionally infection of blistered areas or scarring may occur.
How should I treat the area after the procedure?
No special care is needed if the treated area remains “dry” (ie: the skin remains intact). However, it is always a good idea to keep the skin clean.
If a blister (or blood-blister) develops, and you are concerned about it breaking, then you can remove the fluid with a sterile needle. It is important to leave the “blister-roof” intact, as this will permit it to heal quickly.
If the treated area weeps, then soak it three times a day with salt water (one tablespoon of salt to one pint of water). After soaking, apply an over-the-counter antibiotic such as polysporin. Use a Band-Aid (optional).
Use Tylenol (325mg-two tablets) every four hours as needed for pain.