CryosurgeryBy Pete On March 19, 2012 Under Uncategorized
Despite the name, cryosurgery isn’t really surgery at all and is also known by the term “cryotherapy.” It works by using a super cooled gas, such as liquid nitrogen, to freeze the skin above the tattoo. The procedure has been around for over 100 years but is still a relatively uncommon way of removing a tattoo.
Freezing the skin destroys the cells inside resulting in the skin peeling away. It is similar to getting frostbite. The frozen tissue below the skin where the tattoo pigment lies is also destroyed and then slowly replaced by the body’s healing process.
The procedure is not as painful as laser treatment but is also not pain free. Chances of scarring are minimal but there is a risk of damage to nearby tissue and nerve cells. Some patients have experienced pigmentation changes in the skin after treatment and healing. The risk here, as ever, will be greater for patients with darker skin tones.
This is not a DIY procedure. Cryosurgery can only be performed by a dermatologist or trained medical professional.
Several treatments will be necessary but the number and depth of treatments will depend on the size, location, age and depth of the tattoo. Cryotherapy treatment on areas of very thin skin and no fat, such as the ankle, may be very painful and not advisable.
Image credit: uchospitals.edu