Histopathological analysis of skin biopsies in a tertiary care setting

Faiza Azam, Sidra Munir, Ameena Ashraf, Ambereen Anwar Imran, Tariq Rashid


Objective To determine the spectrum and frequency of skin diseases on the basis of histopathology.


Methods 152 skin biopsy specimens were received during a period of one year. They were processed routinely and findings recorded. Relevant demographic data as well as clinical findings were also noted. After diagnosis, the cases were divided into seven groups, viz, eczema-dermatitis, papulosquamous disorders, infectious disorders, blistering disorders, neoplastic lesions, degenerative diseases and miscellaneous lesions. Results were analyzed using percentage frequencies, Fischer’s exact test and student’s t test as appropriate.


Results The age range of patients was 5-81 years with mean being 37.59±17 years. Majority of biopsies were from male patients (55.3%). Papulosquamous disorders were the most common group with a frequency of 46.7%. Second most frequent skin disease groups were eczema -dermatitis and blistering disorders, each accounting for 12.5 % of all biopsies. Neoplastic lesions constituted 10.5% of the lesions, with benign and malignant lesions presenting at the average ages of 47 and 43 years respectively.


Conclusion The average age at presentation was close to that reported by other researchers from this region. The greater number of male patients is at variance from most other reported studies. The difference was statistically highly significant (p=0.0031). The frequency of different diagnostic groups was unique in some respects and conformed to other studies in others. The most striking was the statistically significant difference in age of presentation of patients with malignant neoplasms. This highlights the need to raise awareness in public about the possible precautionary measures that need to be taken, in this region with high levels of exposure to sunlight.



Skin biopsy, papulosquamous disorders, eczema-dermatitis, blistering disorders, neoplastic lesions

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