Skin cryosurgery, or cryotherapy, is a treatment that uses extreme cold produced by liquid nitrogen or argon gas to destroy cancer cells and abnormal tissue. Cryosurgery is used to treat tumors on the skin, skin tags, warts and skin growths called actinic keratoses that can turn into cancer. You may need cryosurgery more than once.

  • You may have discomfort, burning, or pain during and after your skin cryosurgery. Your skin may be red or swollen, or a blister may form. Your skin may bleed, or you may get an infection.
  • The treated skin may take longer than expected to heal, and you may get a scar. A new lesion may grow in the same area. You may need cryosurgery again. Your nerves may be damaged and your skin may be numb. Skin cryosurgery may also cause your treated skin to get lighter or darker or to lose hair.