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The Importance of Understanding Skin Morphology

Histotechnologists must have a general understanding of skin morphology in order to make knowledgeable decisions when processing the specimens and making optimal slides that are essential for an accurate patient diagnosis.
  • During embedding, skin layers must be identified in order to properly secure the skin in paraffin.
  • During the sectioning process, it is helpful to recognize which direction the hair or epidermis is facing in order to obtain the best sections.
  • During the staining process, the skin layers and cells must be identified in order to confidently ensure the quality of the stained slides.
Since the majority of skin pathology occurs in the dermal-epidermal junction (the top two skin layers), distinguishing and maintaining the integrity of these skin layers is of critical importance.