9 Conditions Cryosurgery Can Help Treat

Cryosurgery is an alternative to traditional surgery that can treat many dermatological conditions in cats and dogs. Here are nine times your veterinarian might recommend cryosurgery and the advantages of the procedure.

Cryosurgery, also known as cryotherapy, is a medical technique that involves using extremely cold temperatures to destroy or remove abnormal tissues. With a special device, a veterinarian will apply liquid nitrogen or argon gas to the affected area to achieve therapeutic results, mostly related to skin issues. Let’s look at some of the conditions cryosurgery can help treat and the benefits of this therapy.

Conditions Your Veterinarian May Treat with Cryosurgery

Cryosurgery is often used to treat skin conditions, especially in areas that would be difficult/impossible to reach with traditional surgery, such as the mouth. However, it has many therapeutic uses for cats and dogs, and can treat:

  1. Tumors
  2. Hyperkeratosis
  3. Skin tags
  4. Warts
  5. Cancer
  6. Nail bed infections
  7. Ingrown nails
  8. Skin lesions
  9. Cysts

What’s more, cryosurgery can even help manage pain because the procedure numbs sensory nerves for a time.

Benefits of Cryosurgery

Cryosurgery can treat many conditions all over the body, and the therapy has many advantages.

For starters, it’s less invasive than traditional surgical procedures. It typically doesn’t require incisions or stitches, which can lead to shorter recovery times and reduced risk of infection. In fact, the extreme cold can kill bacteria, thereby preventing infections. And because cryosurgery doesn’t involve cutting into the skin, it generally results in minimal scarring compared to traditional surgeries.

Another great thing about cryosurgery is that it doesn’t require general anesthesia, so it’s suitable for more patients, including high-risk animals like elderly dogs and cats.

Furthermore, cryosurgery is often a quick procedure, and veterinarians can do it in an outpatient setting. Dogs and cats can usually return to their normal activities shortly after the treatment. It’s also more cost-effective than traditional surgical methods, as it may not require a hospital stay or extensive post-operative care.

Finally, the procedure allows for precise targeting of the treatment area. This is particularly valuable when dealing with small lesions or tumors, as it helps spare surrounding healthy tissues.


Cryosurgery has numerous benefits, including minimal bleeding, reduced pain, and faster recovery compared to traditional surgical methods. However, it may not be suitable for all medical conditions. The decision to use cryosurgery depends on the specific circumstances of the patient and the nature of the condition. As with any medical procedure, always discuss potential risks and side effects with a veterinary healthcare professional.


Animal Wellness

Animal Wellness is North America\’s top natural health and lifestyle magazine for dogs and cats, with a readership of over one million every year. AW features articles by some of the most renowned experts in the pet industry, with topics ranging from diet and health related issues, to articles on training, fitness and emotional well being.

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