What is a skin biopsy, and why is it done?

A skin biopsy is an easy and minimally invasive procedure that lets doctors examine the small sensory nerves in the skin. These nerves pass on information about pain and temperature. These types of nerves are often involved in certain kinds of peripheral nerve damage (neuropathies). The test lets doctors find the nerves and see how many of them there are and if they are healthy. In general, when the nerves are damaged, a number of nerves shows up as abnormal under a microscope.