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Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology
Volume 74, n° 1
pages 19-25 (janvier 2016)
Doi : 10.1016/j.jaad.2015.06.034
accepted : 8 June 2015
Continuing Medical Education

Skin biopsy : Identifying and overcoming errors in the skin biopsy pathway

Erik J. Stratman, MD a, , Dirk M. Elston, MD b, Stanley J. Miller, MD c
a Department of Dermatology, The Marshfield Clinic, Marshfield, Wisconsin 
b Department of Dermatology and Dermatologic Surgery, Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, South Carolina 
c Department of Dermatology, Johns Hopkins Hospital, Baltimore, Maryland 

Correspondence to: Erik J. Stratman, MD, Department of Dermatology (3P2), Marshfield Clinic, 1000 N Oak Ave, Marshfield, WI 54449.

The skin biopsy pathway involves numerous communication requirements, technical events, human handoffs, and cognitive decisions. Every step in the process has an error rate >0. To deliver the highest quality care, dermatologists obtaining skin biopsy specimens should implement systems in their office to minimize errors. This includes the prevention of wrong-site surgery, which in most instances involves accurate communication of the correct biopsy location to the performing surgeon. Part II of this continuing medical education article presents techniques for assessing and planning improvement to the skin biopsy pathway in your office, and provides a simple online quality improvement activity that allows Board-certified dermatologists the opportunity to potentially improve aspects of the skin biopsy process in their own practices, and in the process obtain Maintenance of Certification credit.

The full text of this article is available in PDF format.

 Funding sources: None.
 Conflicts of interest: None declared.
 Date of release: January 2016
 Expiration date: January 2019
 Reprints not available from the authors.

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