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Purnima Sau, M.D.


American Board of Dermatology Biography:

Board certified in Dermatology, Dermatopathology, and Pathology, Dr. Purnima Sau brings to her practice over 20 years of clinical experience. After completing medical school at Calcutta National Medical Institute in India in 1966, she moved to the northeast United States where she did her internship and residency in Pathology and a fellowship in Gynecologic Pathology. In 1976, she joined the U.S. Air Force as a pathologist, where she served as the Chief of Pathology at USAF Regional Hospital at Eglin Air Force Base in Florida.

In 1979, she and her family relocated to the DC area, where she began her training in Dermatopathology at the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology and served as a consultant dermatopathologist in the Department of Dermatopathology until 1984. After serving as the Chief of Anatomic Pathology at Wilford Hall USAF Medical Center at Lackland AFB in Texas from 1984 to 1985, Dr. Sau returned to the DC area, which she now calls home. She trained in Dermatology at Walter Reed Army Medical Center (WRAMC) from 1985 to 1988, and was later appointed Assistant Chief of Dermatology and Chief Dermatopathologist for the Dermatology Service at WRAMC. Her military career culminated with her appointment to Chief of the Dermatology Service and Director of the Dermatology Residency Training Program, positions which she held from 1995 to 1998. After retiring from the US Army in 1998, Dr. Sau began her private practice for Dermatology in Silver Spring, MD. She also consults as a dermatopathologist for her Silver Spring Dermatopathology Service.

In her years as an academic physician, she has produced over 50 publications, including a book chapter in Pathology of the Skin, 2nd Ed. by Farmer and Hood and a Dermatopathology Interactive Atlas CD-ROM. Dr. Sau has been an Associate Professor of Dermatology at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Science in Bethesda, MD since 1993. She currently serves as a consultant dermatologist to WRAMC and the National Institutes of Health. In addition to her regular practice, she conducts skin cancer screenings at community hospitals as well as occasional guest lectures for academic institutions.

Residency Training

  • Dermatology, Walter Reed Army Medical Center, 1988
  • Dermatopathology, Armed Forces Institute of Pathology, 1980
  • Pathology, Brookdale Hospital Center, Kings County Hospital, Sinai Hospital, 1975

Board Certified/Specialized Training

  • Dermatology
  • Dermatopathology
  • Pathology