The skin is the human body's largest organ.

In addition to protecting the muscles, organs, and every other body tissue, it serves as an important temperature and fluid regulation system.

The skin is susceptible to infections and diseases, particularly cancer. Skin cancer is the most frequently diagnosed cancer in the United States.

The appearance of the skin can also contain clues to other conditions, for example:

  • a rash may indicate lupus
  • hair loss may indicate a hormonal imbalance

The Role of the Dermatopathologist

If your doctor notices changes in your skin (a rash, a nodule, a mole, or other abnormality), he or she may perform a skin biopsy and have the sample sent to our lab.

Our expert dermatopathologists will examine it, send it for processing, analyze it microscopically and then provide your doctor with a diagnosis that will be used to establish a treatment plan.

Learn more about dermatopathology from the Department of Pathology.‚Äč

  • Get your test results through UPMC HealthTrak now in a new window.
  • Learn how you can support UPMC pathology research

Second Opinions for Providers

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For help in finding a doctor or health service that suits your needs, call the UPMC Referral Service at 412-647-UPMC (8762) or 1-800-533-UPMC (8762). Select option 1.

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Medical information made available on is not intended to be used as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. You should not rely entirely on this information for your health care needs. Ask your own doctor or health care provider any specific medical questions that you have. Further, is not a tool to be used in the case of an emergency. If an emergency arises, you should seek appropriate emergency medical services.

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