I went in to the dermatologist today, with a long list of questions and things that I would like to improve. I mentioned an age spot that bothers me- she then proceeded to pick up a can of liquid nitrogen and blast my spot. Has anyone ever heard of this age spot treatment?
Age Spot Removal with Liquid Nitrogen?
Doctor Answers (2)
Liquid nitrogen or cryotherapy or cryosurgery is frequently used and commonly accepted by dermatologists as an effective treatment for a variety of skin growths. The advantage to cryosurgery is it is effective for thicker benign unsightly growths whereas laser does not effectively remove thick "hyperkeratotic" growths. The other advantage is that it is typically safe, fast, and inexpensive.
Some of the disadvantages of cryosurgery are the short term "pain" associated with treatment to the spot treated as well as the risk of "hypopigmentation" or "lightening" of the skin in the spot treated.
There are other options such as Laser Ablation of these age spots but, the service is not covered by most insurance carriers, Medicare, Medicade, etc. In short you pay for this type of procedure as a cosmetic or aesthetic service.
Gary R Culbertson, MD, FACS
These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.