"What is the preferred way to send nail clippings for analysis?"
Nail clippings are processed much like skin biopsies. You should send the nail and any debris from under the nail. This debris holds the nail fungus, and is needed to determine the diagnosis. The nail should be placed in our formalin free fixative, and allowed to float freely in the specimen bottle. The fixative fixes the nail making it easier for our laboratory technicians to appropriately cut the nail clipping during specimen processing.
"How long does Pinkus Dermatopathology Laboratory keep the slides from biopsies?"
We keep all slides from biopsies sent to our laboratory for seven years. Our dermatopathologists can then review the current slide along with the previous slide(s) when a patient seeks continuation of care.
"Who should I ask for when I call with a question on a Pinkus Dermatopathology Laboratory report?"
If your question is regarding the diagnosis received from our laboratory, you need to speak with one of our board-certified dermatopathologists. Normally you would speak with the dermatopathologist who originally reviewed your specimen, unless he/she is not immediately available. You then have the option of waiting for a call back from that physician or discussing the case with another available board-certified dermatopathologist.
"How long has Pinkus Dermatopathology Laboratory been in existence?"
Hermann Pinkus, MD, a pioneer in dermatopathology services and educating dermatologists about dermatopathology, established the laboratory in 1940. The laboratory has been in continuous operation for over 60 years and is one of the oldest in the United States.
"What is the extent of Pinkus Dermatopathology Laboratory’s experience?"
We have multiple dermatopathologists with over 60 years of combined experience in dermatopathology. We have diagnosed over two million biopsy cases and have written many textbooks and articles in dermatopathology. Our dermatopathologists are affiliated with Wayne State University and University of Toledo. Since we have more than one dermatopathologist, you can request more than one opinion on your case. There is no additional charge for this service.
"How do I take a scalp biopsy properly?"
A scalp biopsy for alopecia is best obtained with a 4 mm punch biopsy. The biopsy must extend to the subcutaneous fat. If there is an area of alopecia with some active inflammation at the border, the border is the proper place to take the biopsy. A biopsy in the central (non-hair bearing) area of the alopecia provides the least amount of information versus the border of alopecia and normal hair bearing surface. If you have any questions concerning this procedure, please contact Dr. David Mehregan at 800-746-5870.