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What is a Soft Tissue Biopsy?
A soft tissue biopsy is the removal and microscopic examination of a small sample of soft tissue for diagnostic purposes. “Soft tissue” includes the skin, fat, muscle, and tendons that surround, connect, or support other tissues or organs.
Soft tissue biopsies require little time or involvement from the patient. They enable the foot and ankle surgeon to reach an accurate diagnosis and determine the best treatment for the specific condition.
Conditions Identified by Soft Tissue Biopsies
Non-surgical treatment may help relieve the pain of a plantar fibroma, although it will not make the mass disappear. The foot and ankle surgeon may select one or more of the following non-surgical options:
Benign pigmented, or colored, spots (moles or nevus)
Fungal or bacterial infections
Rashes (such as eczema or dermatitis)
Lesions related to a disease affecting the entire body (such as diabetes)
Nodular conditions (such as a ganglion cyst, lipoma, or fibroma)
Toenail conditions (onychomycosis, psoriasis)
Wart-like growths on the skin (benign keratoses)
Premalignant conditions (actinic and seborrheic keratoses)
What Does the Biopsy Involve?
A biopsy involves removal of a small piece of tissue, and takes just a few minutes. The procedure performed will depend on the tissue to be sampled. After numbing the area, the surgeon performs one of the following:
Shave biopsy. A thin piece of tissue is shaved off.
Punch biopsy. A small, round instrument removes a tiny core of tissue. Stitches may be needed.
Incisional or excisional biopsy. A piece, or the entire lesion, is removed. Stitches are often needed.
Once the sample is obtained, the surgeon sends it to a clinical laboratory so that the condition can be identified. The specimen will be examined by a pathologist who specializes in evaluating soft tissue biopsies.
After the Biopsy
Patients should follow the instructions provided by the surgeon for care of the biopsy site. If the area has stitches, an appointment will be scheduled for their removal.
It usually takes several days for the lab results to arrive at the surgeon’s office. If the patient has not heard about the results after 10 days, the surgeon’s office should be contacted. Biopsy results, as well as additional treatment that may be required, will then be discussed.
UPDATE 3/23/20: In attempt to maintain the safety of our patients, employees, and the community, the office is physically closed, other than for the care of patients with urgent concerns / emergenices only. Attempts will be made to return phone calls Monday through Thursday from 9AM to 1PM. Please use the "Request an Appointment" resource above to request an appointment. If an established patient, we encourage you to log into the Patient Portal and send a message to Dr. Barnes or the office with any questions or concerns. Thank you.
TeleHealth and Tele-Visits in the time of COVID-19
Step Ahead Foot & Ankle Clinic, PC has initiated a TeleHealth Service during the COVID-19 Pandemic for a number of reasons:
1.) Our top priority has always been, and continues to be, Patient, Employee, Community Health and Safety.
2.) With the primary goal of triaging, or prioritizing what's urgent and what's not, Dr. Barnes seeks to help patients with the foot concerns over the phone or computer. Caring for patients in this way, and arranging for visits in clinic if necessary (infections, ulcerations, injuries) and in a controlled environment, she hopes to do her part in allowing to the Urgent Cares and Emergencies Rooms help those with needs related to the virus.
3.) Although Dr. Barnes obviously cannot physicially treat you or other patients over the phone or computer, she can hopefully see if your concern would be best treated physically, and arrange for this to be done. If she can help give you direction and advice over the computer or phone, she will do so. This particularly applies to you if you have foot pain, as many treatment options can be relayed in this way (stretches, shoe recommendations, orthotic recommendations).
4.) During this time of anxiety, stress, and uncertainty, Dr. Barnes wants to do her part in helping you do the things you need to do (caring for a loved one, running outside for stress relief, or walking on a treadmill at home, for example) without foot pain interfering. She does't want you to have to wait months or an indefinite period of time for you to get back on your feet! "CLICK HERE TO REQUEST A TELEVISIT."