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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

  • Chong TA, Hansra NK, Ruben BS, Berger TG. Diverticulitis: an inciting factor in erythema nodosum. J. Am. Acad. Dermatol. 2012;67(1):e60–62.
  • Kolivras A, Moulonguet I, Ruben BS, Sass U, Cappelletti L, André J. Eruptive tumors of the follicular infundibulum presenting as hypopigmented macules on the buttocks of two Black African males. J Cutan Pathol. 2012 Apr;39(4):444-8.
  • Coggshall K, Farsani T, Ruben B, et al. Keratitis, ichthyosis, and deafness (KID) syndrome: A review of infectious and neoplastic complications. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2013.
  • 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.

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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