Dermoscopy or dermatoscopy refers to the examination of the skin using skin surface microscopy, and is also called ‘epiluminoscopy’ and ‘epiluminescent microscopy’. Derm(at)oscopy is mainly used to evaluate pigmented skin lesions. In experienced hands it can make it easier to diagnose melanoma.
Dermoscopy requires a high quality magnifying lens and a powerful lighting system (a dermatoscope). This allows examination of skin structures and patterns. There are several different lightweight, battery-powered hand-held devices. Convenient attachments allow video or still photography, including via smartphone.