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Beth S. Ruben, MD

Research and Clinical Interests

Having graduated from Stanford University School of Medicine, I completed medical and surgical internship at California Pacific Medical Center, and then Dermatology Residency at UC Davis. During this time an interest in dermatopathology blossomed, probably fueled during medical school days as a histology teaching assistant and perhaps partly genetic in origin (my father is a pathologist!). I stayed on as faculty in Dermatology there for several years, after the birth of twins, taking time out to complete Dermatopathology Fellowship training at UC San Francisco, from 1996-97. I returned to UC Davis, where I practiced both medical and surgical dermatology and dermatopathology until 2001. I also served as Dermatology residency program director. After a foray into private-practice dermatopathology as part of an enjoyable large pathology group, I returned to the Dermatopathology Service at UCSF as faculty in 2004.

As a dermatology-trained dermatopathologist, I particularly enjoy integrating clinical clues and histologic findings in an effort to reach the most effective diagnosis, especially in complex medical and hospitalized patients. My colleagues and I enjoy interacting with our clinicians, often viewing clinical photographs to provide the highest level of diagnostic acumen. I also have a special interest in pathology of the nail unit. I am a founding member of the International Melanonychia Study group, formed to refine clinical and pathologic diagnostic criteria in these neoplasms.

In addition to my diagnostic duties, I am very involved in the dermatopathology curriculum. Teaching and mentoring dermatology, pathology and dermatopathology trainees are also my great joys. I was awarded “Teacher of the Year” in 2006 by the Department of Dermatology. I enjoy giving lectures at meetings in our specialty, sometimes traveling extensively in the process.

Selected Publications

  • Coggshall K, Farsani T, Ruben BS, McCalmont TH, Berger TG, Fox LP, Shinkai K. Keratitis, ichthyosis, and deafness (KID) syndrome: A review of infectious and neoplastic complications, J Am Acad Dermatol. 2013 Jul;69(1):127-34.
  • Di Chiacchio N, Cadore de Farias D, Piraccini BM, Hirata SH,Richert B, Zaiac M, Daniel R, Fanti PA, Andre J, Ruben BS, Fleckman P, Rich P, Haneke E, Chang P, Cherit JD,Scher R, Tosti A. Consensus on melanonychia nail plate dermoscopy. An Bras Dermatol. 2013;88(2):312-7.
  • Di Chiacchio N, Ruben BS, Loureiro WR. Longitudinal melanonychias. Clin Dermatol. 2013;31(5):594–601.
  • Holzberg M, Ruben BS, Baran R. Psoriasis restricted to the nail in a 7-year-old child. Should biologics be an appropriate treatment modality when considering quality of life? J Eur Acad Dermatol Venereol. August 2013. doi:10.1111/jdv.12244.
  • Naujokas A, Charli-Joseph Y, Ruben BS, Yeh I, LeBoit PE, McCalmont TH, Pincus LB.SOX-10 expression in cutaneous myoepitheliomas and mixed tumors. J Cutan Pathol. 2014 Apr;41(4):353-63. Epub 2014 Feb 3.
  • Harp J, Coggshall K, Ruben BS, Ramírez-Valle F, He SY, Berger TG. Cutaneous granulomas in the setting of primary immunodeficiency: a report of four cases and review of the literature. Int J Dermatol. 2015 Mar 13. [Epub ahead of print] doi:10.1111/ijd.12765
  • Yu WY-H, Manrriquez E, Bhutani T, Chaganti RK, Ruben BS, Schwartz BS, Fox LP. Sweet heart: A case of pregnancy-associated acute febrile neutrophilic dermatosis with myopericarditis. JAAD Case Reports. 2015;1(1):12-14. doi:10.1016/j.jdcr.2014.09.005.
  • Patel AS, Schulman JM, Ruben BS, Hoffmann WH, Dowd CF, Frieden IJ, Hess CP. Atypical MRI features in soft-tissue arteriovenous malformation: a novel imaging appearance with radiologic-pathologic correlation. Pediatr Radiol. April 2015. doi:10.1007/s00247-015-3359-z.
  • Ruben BS, Yu WY, Liu F, Truong SV, Wang KC, Fox LP. Generalized Benign Cutaneous Reaction to Cytarabine. Accepted for publication, J Am Acad Dermatol. 2015
  • Ruben BS. Pigmented lesions of the nail unit. Sem Cut Med Surg. 2015 Jun; 34:101-108. Review.
  • Shain AH, Yeh IY, Kovalyshyn I, Sriharan Am Talevich E, Gagnon A, Dummer R, North J, Pincus L, Ruben B, Rickaby W, D'Arrrigo C, Robson A, Bastian BC. The genetic evolution of melanoma from benign and borderline precursor lesions. N Eng J Med, Accepted for publication. 2015

Book Chapters

  • Ruben BS and Connolly MK. Nodules in rheumatoid arthritis. In: Rheumatic disease and the Skin, Mattucci-Cerinic M, Furst D, and Fiorentino, D eds. Springer, New York 2013: 133-138.
  • Ruben BS. Pigmented Lesions of the Nail Apparatus. In: Pathology of Melanocytic Nevi and Melanoma. Barnhill RL, Piepkorn MW, Busam KJ, eds. Third edition. Springer. New York. 2014: 603-25.
  • Ruben BS. Neoplastic and Non-neoplastic Disorders of the Nail Apparatus. In Busam KJ, ed. Dermatopathology. Second edition. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier/Saunders; 2015:691-718.
  • Hall BJ and Ruben BS. Histopathology of Drug Reactions. In: Cutaneous Drug Eruptions. Hall BJ and Hall JC, eds. Springer Science and Media, 2015. In press.
  • North JP, McCalmont TH, Ruben BS. Cutaneous adnexal tumors. In: UpToDate, Post TW (Ed), UpToDate, Waltham, MA. (Accessed on ___________________.)

Additional Information

Beth S. Ruben, MD
  • Professor of Clinical Dermatology and Pathology
  • Dermatopathology Fellowship Program Director
  • Dermatology and Pathology
  • Dermatopathology Service

Specialty Area

Histopathology associated with systemic disease, inpatient dermatopathology and pathology of the nail unit

Contact Information

  • 1701 Divisadero Street, Suite 280
  • Box 1790
  • San Francisco, CA 94115

Web Site

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