In addition to dermatoscopy, confocal microscopy helps surgeons to treat skin conditions, by-passing painful and unnecessary biopsies and investigations. Increasingly non-invasive imaging tools, such as dermatoscopy and confocal microscopy, aid physicians in the diagnosis and management of skin conditions. Sadly, as we are living longer, so skin diseases such as melanoma and non-melanoma skin cancer are increasing in number. So, while histologic examination is still necessary – and the gold standard in diagnosis – non-invasive imaging tools help detect melanoma early and reduce the number of unnecessary excisions. Dermatoscopy and confocal microscopy are used in combination, to increase the successful rate of diagnosis of skin cancer, and to identify early. They are links between clinical examination and histopathological examination.
This is Dr Stevens’ approach, to incorporate non-invasive tools in the management of skin cancer. He is able to utilise his extensive knowledge, training, and experience of dermatoscopy and confocal microscopy to gather pertinent information about the gross morphological and cellular features of the lesion non-invasively and painlessly. This
improves diagnostic accuracy before deciding whether there is a need for a biopsy. This combined approach markedly reduces the number of unnecessary biopsies which are performed.