CryoPen Cryotherapy for the treatment of Verrucae
What is CryoPen Cryotherapy and how does it work?
At 21st Century clinic one of the treatments we offer for Verrucae is cryotherapy. CryoPen technology is an established, and safe form of treatment. CryoPen therapy is a process where pressurised nitrogen gas is applied to the affected area; it is precise in its delivery. The temperature of the viral cells and the surrounding skin is reduced to approximately minus 89 degrees! freezing the area. Ice shards form on the surface of the skin, when this melts; the virus cell structure is broken down enabling the body to recognise the virus, thereby fighting it off and aiding resolution of the Verruca.
What are Verrucae and how do I know if I have one?
Verrucae are a type of Wart, caused by a virus called the Human Papilloma virus (HPV). This virus affects the skin causing a build- up of hard skin. They appear as white lesions on the skin, often with multiple black dots, they tend to be raised and painful if on a weight bearing part of the foot. Verrucae are commonly found on the sole of the feet and toes. These areas can become painful on walking. Research shows that approximately half of all Verrucae in adults will resolve on an average within two years.
How do Verrucae develop?
HPV can be found on surfaces we come into contact with everyday, on door handles, lift buttons it is therefore impossible to eradicate the virus. The virus requires a portal of entry to take hold; this can be dry skin on the feet, or a cut or an abrasion which is invisible to the naked eye. Simply walking along non-slip tiles in the house or around a swimming pool is enough to cause minor abrasions to the skin, allowing the virus to enter. It is therefore a myth that you can contract the virus only from swimming pools.
Sweaty feet may predispose you to Verrucae as the skin can become soft and develop abrasions in the skin.
Current research does not identify the reasons why some people are more prone to contracting Verrucae than others.
Your initial consultation will last approximately 30 minutes and treatment options will be discussed. If you opt for Cryotherapy, your first treatment will be at this assessment appointment.
What happens during a Cryotherapy appointment?
The Podiatrist will remove the overlying hard skin, after which the CryoPen is applied for approximately 15-20 seconds, depending on the size of the lesion. The process is repeated a second time once the area has thawed. Generally, no anaesthesia or numbing cream is required before treatment. Mild to medium stinging immediately after the procedure is possible, this may last for several minutes to an hour. The Podiatrist can apply some padding to offload the area, or apply a small dressing if required.
The treatment is usually repeated between 1-3 weeks, for up to 6 sessions. The number of treatment sessions will vary depending on the size and duration of the Verruca.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the possible side effects on the feet?
CryoPen Therapy is relatively low risk and side effects and complications are minimal. Side effects that may occur as a result of treatment include:
Skin pigment changes: Both hypo and hyper pigmentation (lightening and darkening) can last a few months or longer, depending on the area treated.
Blisters: Blisters may appear on toes after treatment if this is the area that is being treated. These usually disappear after a few days.
Scab formation: Often a scab will form in the following days, this is common where deep freezing is used.
Will it hurt?
You will experience slight discomfort while the CryoPen is being applied. The discomfort usually feels like the pressure of a pen being pressed against the skin, this will only last a few seconds.
Will there be scarring?
No, however it can take from a few months to a year after the last treatment, for the skin to appear normal again.
Is the effect of the treatment permanent?
In some cases, this process gives permanent results. Re -occurrence elsewhere on the feet is possible. No treatment is known to guarantee a 100 percent success rate.
If you would like to book an appointment or require further information about cryotherapy, contact the clinic on 0118 93111 444