Skin biopsy is a useful test to some patients and is usually offered only after careful consideration. This procedure is done on an outpatient basis and is usually done under local anesthesia.
Skin or Punch biopsy is an investigational procedure to obtain skin specimens or to remove the lesion for laboratory analysis. This procedure is done on an outpatient basis and is usually done under local anesthesia. The skin specimen is obtained using a punch or steel blade and the wound is closed with stitches and a dressing will be applied. No stitches will be used when a shave biopsy is done.
The advantage of skin biopsy is that the dermatologist can now treat the skin problem with a definitive diagnosis after the laboratory analysis. The alternative of not doing the skin biopsy is to start treatment based on clinical diagnosis.
A lot of skin diseases are treated on the basis of clinical diagnosis e.g. eczema, psoriasis and urticaria. However, certain skin diseases mandate a skin biopsy because the treatment plan hinges on an accurate and definitive diagnosis, e.g.:
Sometimes, dermatologists can be stumped and are not sure of the clinical diagnosis. A skin biopsy will be a useful test to provide additional information.
Generally, the biopsy procedure is safe and without any side effects. However, as with any surgical procedure there are rare but possible complications as follow:
There is usually minimal postoperative pain, discomfort or downtime and the patient is fit to go back to work. Wound review and dressing change will be arranged 1-2 days postoperatively and suture removal is generally 7-14 days later.
The test report is usually available 5-6 days later and Dr Wong will discuss the result of the test report with you and plan for further treatment during your follow-up visit to the clinic.
Dr Wong always tells his patients the following:
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Our specialist listens & explains well to his patients on their skin issues and their queries.
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