A skin (skin) biopsy removes cells from the surface of your body. Skin biopsy is most often used to diagnose skin conditions, including melanoma and other types of cancer. The type of skin biopsy you will undergo will depend on the type of suspicious cancer and the extent of the suspicious cells. Skin biopsy procedures include:
- Shave the biopsy. During a shave biopsy, the doctor uses a tool similar to a razor to scrape the surface of the skin.
- Punch biopsy. During a puncture biopsy, the doctor uses a circular tool to remove a small section of the deeper layers of the skin.
- Incisional biopsy During an incisional biopsy, the doctor uses a scalpel to remove a small area of the skin. If you receive stitches to close the biopsy site it depends on the amount of skin removed.
- Excisional biopsy During a excisional biopsy, the doctor removes a complete lump or an entire area of abnormal skin. You are likely to receive stitches to close the biopsy site.
Receive a local anesthetic to numb the biopsy site before the procedure.