Background. Primary care providers (PCPs) have limited training in recognizing common skin disorders, and additional emphasis may be placed on laboratory evaluation, including skin biopsies. Methods. Primary care providers in Miami, Fla, were surveyed regarding skin biopsy and excision practices and histologic interpretation. They then participated in an examination, using 20 high-quality color photographs of common dermatologic disorders. Results. Of the 80 PCPs who participated, 42% currently do skin biopsies and consult general pathologists for interpretation. Another 20% of PCPs intend to do biopsies within the next 5 years. Only 33% prefer to have a dermatopathologist interpret histopathology. We found no correlation between PCPs' scores on diagnostic testing and whether they do skin biopsies. Conclusion. Nearly all PCPs doing skin biopsies in our study sample use general pathologists to interpret histopathology. The limited training in clinical dermatology of both PCPs and general pathologists may result in compromised clinical-pathologic correlation.
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