Cryoablation, also known as cryotherapy, is a procedure that freezes and destroys diseased tissue or abnormal cells.

Liquid nitrogen, liquid nitrous oxide, or high-pressure argon gas flows into a needle-like applicator or cryoprobe, making the tip extremely cold. Using ultrasound as a guide, the podiatrist locates the damaged area with precise accuracy, and inserts the tip of the cryoprobe into the damaged area and holds it for seconds (or minutes). This may be repeated in order to destroy the pathology completely.

The cryoablation procedure may take 15 minutes or longer, depending on how many areas are being treated, and the severity of the condition. Dead cells will be eventually discarded by the body. Recovery time in these types of cryoablations may be immediate or range from 1-3 days depending on the nature and extent of damage and length of treatment.

Cryoablation can be used to treat various conditions of the feet such as hardened, inflamed tissue surrounding a nerve (Morton’s neuroma), fibrous knots in the arch of the foot (plantar fibroma), and inflamed tissue on the sole of the feet (plantar fasciitis). In these cases, the cryoablation procedure is minimally invasive, and may be administered with or without local anesthesia.

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