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October 5, 1963

Care of Biopsy Specimen

JAMA. 1963;186(1):82. doi:10.1001/jama.1963.03710010116031

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To the Editor:  —In reference to the editorial, "Care of the Biopsy Specimen" (JAMA184:654 [May 25] 1963), it is most important in dermatology that biopsies be selected from the proper site at the right time, etc. There are a few simple factors which, if followed, will increase biopsy value. Ordinarily, a biopsy should be at least 4 mm in diameter and 2 mm in depth. With the possible exception of lesions of the nose, biopsy of this size does not increase scarring.A considerable number of skin biopsies are valueless because they are too small. This results in a waste of time and money and is a disservice to the patient.The physician must not pinch the biopsy with forceps, etc, as this will make that part of the biopsy which has been pinched worthless. If one puts the biopsy in peroxide for 1 min, it will remove

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