Cardiac catheter cryoablation uses cold to destroy certain heart cells.

Possible Complications

Problems are rare, but all procedures have some risk. The doctor will go over some problems that could happen, such as:

  • Bleeding
  • Infection
  • Blood clots
  • Damage to nearby structures
  • Abnormal heartbeats
  • Heart attack

Things that may raise the risk of problems are:

  • Smoking
  • Long term diseases such as heart disease, diabetes or obesity



This content is reviewed regularly and is updated when new and relevant evidence is made available. This information is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with questions regarding a medical condition.

Edits to original content made by Denver Health.

a (Cryotherapy; Cryoablation)


American Heart Association 

Heart Rhythm Society 


Canadian Cardiovascular Society 

Heart and Stroke Foundation 


Ablation for arrhythmias. American Heart Association website. Available at: Accessed August 27, 2021.

Andrade JG, Wells GA, et al. Cryoablation or drug therapy for initial treatment of atrial fibrillation. N Engl J Med. 2021;384(4):305-315.

Catheter ablation. Johns Hopkins Medicine website. Available at: Accessed August 27, 2021.

Catheter ablation. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute website. Available at: Accessed August 27, 2021.