Cryotherapy is a cold-based therapy, used in the treatment of tumours, warts and skin conditions. It is curative for a number of ailments, including mouth tumours, skin tags, warts, keratosis, lentigo, lesions, and benign skin imperfections.
Cryotherapy administers extreme cold to a specific area of your pet’s skin. The cold penetrates the targeted unhealthy tissue, freezing and destroying abnormal or diseased cells, while killing off infection if present. This treatment may be used for small tumours in difficult-to-operate areas, or for animals for which anaesthesia is not recommended.
Cold-based therapy is a safe alternative to surgery for benign tumours and skin conditions, including skin cysts in cats and papilloma warts on dogs. It requires little post-op care, and a number of minor issues are cured after a single treatment. Cryotherapy temporarily numbs the surrounding area, providing relief from irritating conditions.
Growths on eyes and mouths can be painful irritants for animals. Using cryotherapy, we can remove growths from sensitive areas without the need for surgery. As it is non-invasive and quick-to-apply, cryotherapy can be administered without the need for lengthy hospital stays or slow recovery periods.
Temporarily numbing the area, cryotherapy can provide relief from irritation caused by swelling. Rather than surgery, cryotherapy requires little post-up care, so your pet need not be bothered by stitches or wounds. And because of its numbing effect, cryotherapy may require only sedation rather than anaesthesia, which makes it a popular treatment alternative in older animals. When we treat an animal using cryotherapy, they will experience a highly localised chill followed by numbness.
At Karingal Veterinary Hospital, we use a highly specific Cryopen, accurate to within 1mm, to treat certain types of tumours and skin conditions. We use this Cryopen to apply extremely cold nitrous oxide gas to the treatment area. Freezing them, ice forms inside the membrane, breaking up the cells from the inside. Most sessions last from 2 to 30 seconds, during which time the animal only feels a cold, numbing sensation around the area.
Small or otherwise inoperable skin conditions, such as warts in mouths or on eyelids, may be treated with Cryotherapy. Some cases require follow-up treatments but a number of ailments are cured after one session.
Because it is non-invasive, cryotherapy can be performed on older animals for which anaesthesia or intensive surgery would be ill recommended. It can also be performed on areas unsuitable for invasive surgery, such as on eyelids, lips and sensitive areas. Cryotherapy numbs rather than irritates or pains, so anaesthetic usually is not needed. A safe treatment option, cryotherapy is repeatable with no major negative side effects. It is a quick, easy and safe treatment option for benign skin conditions, ulcers and growths.
At Karingal Veterinary Hospital and Ballam Park Clinic, our vets have the training and experience required to safely administer cryotherapy to our pets. Although it is a safer treatment option than surgery, cryopens contain liquid nitrogen, which can be damaging if misused, so should not be administered by anybody who is not properly trained in its application, especially around sensitive tissue, such as in the treatment of oral, nasal or facial tumours.
Evidence suggests that all walks of life may benefit from cryotherapy. It is used to treat growths and benign skin conditions in humans, and we have used it to successfully treat a number of our patients, including small animals, rodents, birds and reptiles. Cryotherapy has been used to treat:
For more information on cryotherapy, talk to your vet during your pet’s next annual check-up, or contact us today.