ELECTROSURGERY AND CRYOTHERAPY
Of benign and malignant lesions
Electrosurgery, including electrodesiccation and currettage, is used to treat benign and premalignant superficial skin lesions as well as small basal cell and squamous cell skin cancers. A curette is used to remove the tumor. An electrode is then used to destroy the surrounding tissue. The electric current stops bleeding and destroys cancerous cells around the edges of the wound. This process may be repeated 2-3 times. If a skin cancer is detected, then follow up is generally scheduled for 3-4 months post op.
Cryosurgery, also called liquid nitrogen therapy, is a treatment that uses an extremely cold liquid to freeze and destroy abnormal skin cells that require removal while preserving the surrounding skin from injury. Cryotherapy is usedto destroy a variety of benign skin growths, such as warts, seborrheic keratoses, pre-cancerous lesions (actinic keratoses), and malignant lesions such as basal cell and squamous cell cancers. The treated area can take 3 to 6 weeks to heal. This type of treatment carries the minor risks of infection, scarring, and stinging pain during the procedure. There is a small chance of recurrence of a skin cancer following cryosurgery. A follow up appointment is recommended to ensure that the treatment was effective in removing the entire cancer.