College of Osteopathic Medicine Faculty Articles

Title

Ultraviolet-Fluorescent Tattoo Facilitates Accurate Identification of Biopsy Sites

ISBN or ISSN

1524-4725

Publication Title

Dermatologic Surgery

Volume

41

Issue

11

Date of original Performance / Presentation

November 2015

Publication Date / Copyright Date

11-1-2015

First Page

1249

Last Page

1256

DOI Number

10.1097/DSS.0000000000000511

Abstract

Background: Cutaneous biopsy sites are often difficult to discern or are frequently misidentified when patients present for the treatment of skin cancers. This frustrating situation can lead to delays in treatment and wrong site surgeries. Current methods aiming to prevent this situation are not perfect. OBJECTIVE: This study seeks to determine the efficacy of ultraviolet-fluorescent tattoos in facilitating the correct identification of suspected nonmelanoma skin cancer biopsy sites. METHODS: In this prospective cohort, 51 shave biopsy sites were tattooed with ultraviolet-fluorescent ink in a series of 31 patients suspected of having a cutaneous malignancy. At the time of follow-up, the ability of the patient and the physician to identify the correct site with and without ultraviolet illumination of the tattoo was recorded. Visibility of the tattoo was graded before and after treatment. RESULTS: Patients could not positively identify their biopsy site in 35% of cases. In 7% of cases, physicians could not confidently identify the site without the aid of ultraviolet illumination. In conjunction with tattoo illumination, physicians confidently identified the site in 100% of the cases. No adverse events occurred. CONCLUSION: Ultraviolet-fluorescent tattoos offer a safe and reliable means of accurately marking cutaneous biopsy sites.

Disciplines

Medical Specialties | Medicine and Health Sciences | Osteopathic Medicine and Osteopathy

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