Dermatopathology is the specialized examination of a skin biopsy.
Ideally, this exam is performed by a highly specialized dermatologist or pathologist with fellowship training, beyond residency, in diagnosing diseases of the skin and skin lesion through microscopic examination of biopsies.
Once your skin biopsy is received by the Dermatopathology laboratory, it is fixed, processed, and cut into extremely thin sheets that are placed onto glass slides and stained. With microscopic examination of these thin sheets of tissue, a trained dermatopathologist can diagnosis skin lesions such as melanoma, basal cell skin cancer, warts, skin tags, and innumerable others. She can also evaluate a biopsy of an inflammatory skin condition (“rash”) and, based on the pattern of inflammation seen in the skin, guide your dermatologist to the most likely diagnosis and possible effective treatments.