Shave skin biopsy

Illustration of a shave skin biopsy

A shave skin biopsy is done to remove a small growth by scraping it off using a surgical knife (scalpel). The biopsy area is then covered with a bandage.

After the growth is removed, a doctor trained to look at tissue samples (pathologist) will check it for abnormalities, such as cancer. The pathologist also may do tests to detect an infection caused by a virus, a fungus, or bacteria.

Last Updated: December 5, 2008

Medical Review: Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine & Alexander H. Murray, MD, FRCPC - Dermatology

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