Overview

Cryoablation for cancer is a treatment to kill cancer cells with extreme cold.

During cryoablation, a thin, wandlike needle (cryoprobe) is inserted through your skin and directly into the cancerous tumor. A gas is pumped into the cryoprobe in order to freeze the tissue. Then the tissue is allowed to thaw. The freezing and thawing process is repeated several times during the same treatment session.

Cryoablation for cancer may be used when surgery isn't an option. Cryoablation is sometimes used as a primary treatment for:

  • Bone cancer
  • Cervical cancer
  • Eye cancer
  • Kidney cancer
  • Liver cancer
  • Lung cancer
  • Prostate cancer

Cryoablation is also used to relieve the pain and other symptoms caused by cancer that spreads to the bone (bone metastasis) or other organs.

Cryoablation for cancer may also be called percutaneous cryoablation, cryosurgery or cryotherapy.

Clinical trials

Explore Mayo Clinic studies testing new treatments, interventions and tests as a means to prevent, detect, treat or manage this disease.

Cryoablation for cancer care at Mayo Clinic

Oct. 26, 2017
References
  1. Cryotherapy. RadiologyInfo.org. https://www.radiologyinfo.org/en/info.cfm?pg=cryo. Accessed June 20, 2017.
  2. Kurup AN, et al. Increasing role of image-guided ablation in the treatment of musculoskeletal tumors. The Cancer Journal. 2016;22:401.