Effect of cough technique and cryogen gas on temperatures achieved during simulated cryotherapy

Yancy Seamans, Charlie Loesel, Jose Jeronimo, John Sellors, Philip E. Castle

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Background: Cryotherapy is often used to treat cervical precancer in developing countries. There are different methods and cryogen gases used for cryotherapy, including the freeze-flush-freeze (cough) technique employed to minimize gas blockage. However, there is limited information to compare their effectiveness. Methods: Using a tissue model, we compared temperature-time curves for four cryotherapy methods: uninterrupted freezing with nitrous oxide (N2O) and carbon dioxide (CO2), and two methods using a standard and extended version of the cough technique with CO2. Results: Uninterrupted freezing with both N2O and CO2 produced tissue temperatures less than -20°C (-40°C and -30°C respectively). CO2 cryotherapy procedures using the two cough techniques produced temperatures greater than -20°C in the model tissue. Conclusion: CO2 cryotherapy using the cough technique may not achieve sufficiently low temperatures to produce the desired therapeutic effect. Other alternatives to the prevention of gas blockage should be developed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number16
JournalBMC Women's Health
StatePublished - Oct 1 2007
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


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