A skin punch biopsy is a medical procedure where skin tissue is acquired for laboratory examination. A punch-size piece of skin is taken from the patient using a tube-shaped tool with a blade. The sample will be taken to the laboratory to test for melanoma and non-melanoma skin cancer or psoriasis.

A skin punch biopsy is a low-risk procedure performed under local anesthesia. Depending on the lesion’s size, the punch biopsy will be either excisional or incisional. The biopsied lesions include inflammatory eruptions (bullous) and complex nevi. This outpatient procedure takes approximately 15 minutes, and the patient will resume their regular duties immediately.

The Procedure

During a skin punch biopsy, a local anesthetic will be applied to the site. The doctor will stretch your skin and use the skin punch tool to remove a deeper layer of the skin. The cookie cutter-like punch tool is rotated into the skin to remove a skin specimen, the size, and shape of a pencil eraser.

Afterward, pressure will be applied to the area to stop the bleeding before it is stitched or dressed. The biopsy sample will be taken for diagnostic testing in the laboratory. If the doctor suspects an immune disorder or infection, more biopsies will be carried out. However, patients with active infections on the planned site for biopsy cannot have skin punch biopsy.

Why Skin Punch Biopsy?

The reason why the doctor will recommend skin punch biopsy is that some skin pathologic conditions or lesions require histological and microscopic examination. The primary indications for skin punch biopsies include suspicious skin lesions and growths such as carcinomas, melanoma, and inflammatory skin conditions.

Through a skin punch biopsy, doctors will be able to remove an area with all layers of the skin, including the dermis, epidermis, and subcutaneous tissue, which are required to carry out proper diagnosis and plan appropriate treatment.

If cancer or any other abnormality is detected, the doctor will recommend further tests, treatment, or follow-up care for the patient. Sometimes a punch biopsy can remove the affected area completely.

We have medical experts who will make sure you are comfortable before undergoing a skin punch biopsy. They will discuss your benefits and potential results with you to help you decide on the best possible options. If an abnormality is detected, our team will develop appropriate treatment for your case.