Shave Biopsy - removes a surface growth off using a blade. After a local anesthetic is injected, a blade is used to remove a thin layer of tissue. This tissue is routinely sent for pathologic examination.
Punch Biopsy - is typically used by dermatologists to sample skin rashes and skin lesions. After a local anesthetic is injected, a biopsy punch, which is basically a small (1 to 4 mm diameter) version of a cookie cutter, is used to cut out a cylindrical piece of skin. The hole may be closed with a suture and heals with minimal scarring.
Intralesional Injections - are the direct placement of a medication into a problem skin area through a very fine needle. Most often, a dilute solution of triamcinalone (Kenalog) is used. Acne cysts, keloids, psoriasis and chronic forms of eczema can be treated this way.
Acne Surgery - is the removing of acne lesions or cysts by using a needle or small pointed blade and expressing the lesions with an extractor.
Cryosurgery (Cryotherapy) - used frequently by dermatologists to treat many skin problems. Liquid nitrogen is sprayed on to the area of skin freezing it. The depth of freezing is determined by the type of lesion being treated. It is used for warts, molluscum, seborrheic keratosis, actinic keratosis, and some skin cancers.
Electrodesiccation and Curettage (ED&C) - scraping or burning-off skin growths (also known as electrodesiccation and curettage) can be used for less serious skin cancers, pre-cancers and benign growths. A local anesthetic is injected, and then the abnormal tissue is scraped off with a special tool. The area is then cauterized until bleeding stops. The wound will need to be dressed until it heals, and it usually leaves a small white mark.
Excision - this is the removal of a benign or malignant lesion along with some of the healthy skin tissue around it (margin). The margin of skin removed is dependent on the type of lesion removed. Prior to the incision, a local anesthetic is used to numb the area. Then a scalpel blade is used to excise the lesion. Once the lesion is removed, the incision is closed with stitches. The inner stitches will dissolve and the outer stitches will need to be removed at a follow-up visit. This procedure will result in a scar.