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Br J Dermatol. 1988 Aug;119(2):231-40.

Cryotherapy for skin cancer: results over a 5-year period using liquid nitrogen spray cryosurgery.

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Department of Dermatology, University Hospital of Wales, Heath Park, Cardiff, U.K.


Three hundred and ninety five selected non-melanoma skin cancers were treated and followed up during the period 1981-1986, using a standardized cryosurgical technique. There was an overall cure rate of 97%. Recurrences were seen in 6 out of 225 (2.7%) treated basal cell carcinomas at a median time of 18 months, 1 of 34 (2.9%) squamous cell carcinomas, with a recurrence at 6 months post-operatively and 1 out of 128 (0.8%) of Bowen's tumours which recurred 6 months after treatment. The patients were treated as out-patients using local anaesthesia and all tolerated the treatment well. This study has shown that cryosurgery is a safe, low cost and effective method of treating selected non-melanoma skin cancer and produced excellent cosmetic results with a high cure rate. It is suggested that patients treated with cryosurgery are followed up carefully for 2 years post-operatively.

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