Punch Biopsy

A skin biopsy involves taking samples of cells or skin from the surface of your body. Samples from a skin biopsy are examined to learn about your health status.

Also, your doctor uses a biopsy to diagnose or rule out certain skin conditions. There are three main types of skin biopsy.

Shaving Biopsy

The doctor uses a razor-like tool to remove a small section of the upper layers of the skin (the epidermis and part of the dermis).

Punch Biopsy

In this method, the doctor takes a small section of the skin from the deeper layers of the skin (epidermis, dermis and superficial fat) using a round tool.

Excisional Biopsy

The doctor removes a swelling or abnormal skin on the skin with a small blade-like instrument (scalpel). While doing this, some amount is taken from the oily part of the normal skin.

Why is Punch Biopsy Performed?

Skin biopsy is used to diagnose or rule out skin diseases. It can also be used to remove skin lesions. Skin biopsy helps in the diagnosis and treatment of skin-related diseases, as well as in the treatment of the following conditions:

actinic keratosis,

  • Bullous pemphigoid and other blistering skin disorders
  • Dermatitis, psoriasis and other inflammatory skin diseases,
  • Skin cancers, including basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma and melanoma
  • skin infections,
  • skin tags,
  • suspicious moles or other growths
  • Like warts.

What Are the Risks of Punch Biopsy?

A skin biopsy is generally a safe procedure, but the following complications may also occur:

  • Bleeding
  • bruising
  • Scar
  • Infection
  • Like an allergic reaction to a topical antibiotic.

How Should You Prepare?

Before a skin biopsy, tell your doctor if you have the following conditions:

  • If you have any diagnosed bleeding disorder,
  • If you have experienced excessive bleeding after other medical procedures.
  • If you are taking aspirin or medicines that contain aspirin-like substances, such as blood thinners such as warfarin or heparin.
  • If you have a history of skin infections such as impetigo
  • You should tell your doctor if you are taking drugs used after organ transplant, used for diabetes or used to suppress the immune system.

What Can You Expect?

Depending on the location of the skin biopsy, you may be asked to put on a clean gown or remove your clothes. A doctor or nurse cleans the involved area of ​​skin before the biopsy is done. You may have the outline of the biopsy area marked on your skin with a surgical marker.

You’ll then receive a local anesthetic to numb the biopsy area. This medicine is given by injection, usually with a fine needle. The numbing medicine can cause a burning sensation on the skin for a few seconds. Afterwards, you should not feel any pain or discomfort during the skin biopsy as the biopsy site will be numb.

Depending on which type of skin biopsy will be applied to your skin during the skin biopsy, the expectations from the procedure are different.

For a shave biopsy, the doctor uses a double-edged razor blade or scalpel to cut tissue. The depth of the incision varies depending on the type of biopsy and the body part being biopsied. A shave biopsy can cause bleeding. Bleeding is stopped by applying pressure to the bleeding area or applying topical drug combinations.

For a punch biopsy or excisional biopsy, stitches may be necessary to close the wound, as the procedure involves cutting the top layer of fatty skin under the skin. A dressing or an adhesive bandage is then attached to the biopsy forehead to protect the wound and prevent bleeding.

A skin biopsy usually takes a total of 15 minutes, including home care, dressing and preparation time before the biopsy.

After Skin Biopsy

Your doctor may ask you not to remove the bandage over the biopsy area until the next day. Sometimes the biopsy area bleeds after you leave the hospital. This condition is higher in people taking blood-thinning medications. If such bleeding occurs, apply direct pressure to the wound for 10 to 20 minutes. If bleeding continues, go to a place where you can get medical help.

All biopsies result in a small scar. In some people, these scars may show an improvement that can be significant. This risk is increased if the biopsy is performed on the back, chest, neck, or upper body. Initially, the scars are pink and later may turn white or sometimes brown. The scars are slowly fading.

Try not to hit the biopsy area and avoid activities that will cause it to stretch. The tension on the skin can cause bleeding and enlargement of the wound.

Wound healing may take several weeks, but is usually complete within two months. Wounds on the legs and feet tend to heal more slowly than wounds elsewhere on the body.

During the healing process of the biopsy area, care should be taken as follows:

• Wash your hands with soap and water before touching the biopsy site.

• Wash the biopsy area with soap and water. If it is on the scalp, use shampoo.

• Rinse the area thoroughly and dry it with a clean towel.

• Cover the skin with a recommended adhesive bandage to ventilate.

Continue to care for the biopsy site until the stitches are removed. Since shaving biopsies do not require stitches in the wound, you should continue to care for the wound until the skin heals.

  • Results

After the biopsy procedure, your doctor sends a sample to the laboratory for testing. Depending on the skin condition, type of biopsy, and laboratory procedures, results may take a few days or weeks. Biopsy results for metabolic or genetic testing may take several months or longer.

Your doctor will share the results of your reports with you. Bring a family member with you, as you may not be able to think of questions about the findings and treatment plan.

Write down the questions you want to ask your doctor. Do not hesitate to ask questions that you do not understand and are curious about. You may want to add the following questions to the questions you want to ask.

  • Based on these results, what are the next steps for treatment?
  • What kind of follow-up is required?
  • Could there be factors that may have influenced or changed the results of this test?
  • Is it necessary to repeat the test at some points?
  • If the skin biopsy indicates skin cancer, has all the cancerous tissue been removed or is additional treatment needed?

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