Liquid nitrogen

Definition

Liquid nitrogen is a chemical that is super cold, about -200 degrees Celsius.

Liquid nitrogen will instantly freeze anything it touches. It is used to kill cells that make up diseased or cancerous tissue. Tissue that has been frozen dries out and falls off.

References

Habif TP. Dermatologic surgical procedures. In: Habif TP, ed. Clinical Dermatology. 5th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Mosby Elsevier; 2009:chap 27.

Revision

Last reviewed 10/14/2012 by Linda J. Vorvick, MD, Medical Director and Director of Didactic Curriculum, MEDEX Northwest Division of Physician Assistant Studies, Department of Family Medicine, UW Medicine, School of Medicine, University of Washington. Also reviewed by A.D.A.M. Health Solutions, Ebix, Inc., Editorial Team: David Zieve, MD, MHA, David R. Eltz, Stephanie Slon, and Nissi Wang.

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