Desiccation for Skin Growths

Dessication, also known as electrodesiccation or electrosurgery, is a form of burning. The doctor uses an electric probe to destroy the skin growth through heat.

Why choose desiccation

Dessication is a highly effective procedure that usually can be completed in one session. It’s relatively inexpensive compared to some other procedures. Since there is minimal risk of scarring, it is a good option for facial growths.

What you should know about desiccation

First the treatment area is cleansed and anesthetized. Then the doctor uses a machine that transmits a high-frequency electrical current to a micro-needle. The procedure is performed under strict sanitary conditions. During the procedure, the micro-needle remains above the skin and does not penetrate its surface. There is no blood associated with the treatment. Current is directed into skin growths for one to two seconds, cauterizing them. The treatment area is left open to scab over. After the scab falls off, the treatment area is replaced with healthy skin.

Possible risks

As with any treatment, there is risk associated it, though they are minimized in the hands of a qualified ASDS doctor. These include:

  • Pain
  • Swelling
  • Scarring
  • Crusting

Cost

The average cost for desiccation ranges from less than $100 to a few hundred dollars per treatment. Since skin growth removal is usually considered a cosmetic procedure, the cost usually isn’t covered by most medical insurance companies.

How to prepare for the procedure

Before the procedure, an ASDS doctor will usually review the patient’s medical history and conduct a physical exam. This is the time for the doctor and patient to discuss expectations, potential risks and outcomes of the procedure. Patients also should:

  • Discuss any susceptibility to cold sores or fever blisters around the mouth since the procedure can trigger breakouts in at-risk individuals.
  • Avoid medications or supplements that can affect blood clotting – such as aspirin, ibuprofen or vitamin E – for 10 days before surgery.

What to expect after the procedure

Recovery time typically is minimal. The treatment area is usually left open to facillitate healing.