Blood flow response to cryosurgery on basal cell carcinomas.
Bircher AJ, Büchner SA
Cryosurgery with liquid nitrogen is commonly used to treat benign and malignant skin tumours. One of the crucial factors which influences the freezing and thawing rate of the target cells is the response of the microcirculation to cold stimulus. In our experiment, laser Doppler flowmetry was used to monitor blood flow during cryosurgical treatment of basal cell carcinomas. Outside the frozen tissue hemisphere, blood flow, as measured by laser Doppler flowmetry, increased almost instantaneously and remained on a high level during thawing. Baseline blood flow at the contralateral anatomical site remained stable. Pharmacological or physical modification of the cutaneous microcirculation before therapy may influence freezing and thawing times, and therefore the outcome with regard to healing, cosmetic appearance and the recurrence rate of basal cell carcinomas.