CPT Code 17340 | Description & Clinical Information

CPT 17340 describes the medical procedure in which the healthcare provider uses cryotherapy, a freezing technique, to treat acne that has not responded to topical or systemic medications.

Official Description

The CPT book defines CPT code 17340 as: “Cryotherapy (CO2 slush, liquid N2) for acne”.

Clinical Information

The procedure describes by CPT code 17340 is a popular treatment option for individuals suffering from acne. The process involves a medical professional washing and cleaning the area of skin that requires treatment. This is typically done to remove any dirt, oil or debris that may be present on the surface of the skin, which could interfere with the efficacy of the procedure.

Once the area has been cleaned, the provider will use cryotherapy, which involves the application of either carbon dioxide slush or liquid nitrogen, over the acne. Using a cotton-tipped swab, the provider will apply the solution to the affected area for a few seconds. This process results in the freezing of the area containing acne, which, in turn, reduces the blood supply to that area.

The reduction in blood supply to the affected area causes the acne to scab over. Over time, as the scabbing process continues, it eventually desquamates and peels off. As the scab falls away, it takes the acne with it, resulting in a reduction in the appearance of acne or even total clearing of the area.

CPT code 17340 is a minimally invasive procedure that is considered safe and effective for most individuals with acne. The treatment is most effective for mild to moderate acne and may not be recommended for severe acne cases. Cryotherapy may also not be appropriate for individuals with certain medical conditions, such as cold urticaria, Raynaud’s disease or other conditions that affect blood circulation.

The recovery period after CPT code 17340 is relatively brief. Patients may experience some redness and mild swelling, along with scabbing and flaking of the skin in the treated area. This should subside within a few days to a week after the procedure. Patients should avoid picking at any scabs that form, as this can cause scarring.

Overall, CPT code 17340 is an effective option for individuals seeking relief from acne. Its success rate is high, and the side effects are minimal. However, it is always important to discuss any cosmetic procedures with a medical professional to ensure they are safe and appropriate for the patient’s unique needs.

Return to all the CPT codes for other procedures on the integumentary system.

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