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Cockerell Dermatopathology: Committed to Excellence

Brand McCarley

Feb 18, 2022

There is an epidemic of skin cancer in the United States and Texas has one of the highest rates of incidence.

Statistically one person dies each hour from skin cancer and melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer. When your doctor, usually a dermatologist, suspects that a lesion might be skin cancer, they perform a minor surgical procedure to obtain a skin biopsy for diagnosis. It is very important that the skin biopsy diagnosis be accurate so that your doctor can formulate the best possible treatment plan. While most patients think a lab is just a lab, there can be a significant quality difference of the diagnostic abilities between laboratories.

Dermatopathologists are highly trained physicians who examine tissue specimens under a microscope, use the medical information shared by the doctor and consult with him or her as necessary. This personal service and collaboration between your doctor and dermatopathologists helps ensure the most accurate diagnosis. In today’s ever changing healthcare environment, patients now have more control over their healthcare choices. When it comes to diagnosing skin, hair and nail disorders, Clay J. Cockerell, MD has personally diagnosed over two and a half million specimens and annually renders over 5,000 expert consultations for other pathologists. Dr. Cockerell and his team of dermatopathologists conduct daily case reviews, which allow multiple dermatopathologists to review difficult cases. Dr. Cockerell also sees patients and evaluates clinical pictures of skin disorders as do the dermatopathologists who work for him as they have training in both dermatology and pathology. Patients have a choice when it comes to who they want to evaluate their biopsy and they can request that it be sent to Cockerell Dermatopathology.



Dr. Clay Cockerell is a board-certified dermatologist and a Fellow of the American Academy of Dermatology. He currently sits on multiple boards and committees. Dr. Cockerell is internationally recognized for his contributions to both dermatology and dermatopathology. He is the past president of the American Academy of Dermatology. For many years, Dr. Cockerell has overseen an educational program designed to train the next generation of dermatopathologists. He has served as Associate Editor of the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, and he is on the editorial boards of several medical journals, including the American Journal of Dermatopathology.

Dr. Clay Cockerell serves as Founder & Medical Director Cockerell Dermatopathology in Dallas, TX. Since joining the group in 1988, Cockerell Dermatopathology has grown into one of the nation’s most respected dermatopathology practices by always focusing on the needs of referring clinicians and their patients.

He has two children, Charles and Lillian, and he and his wife have been married for forty years. Besides being very active within the dermatology and dermatopathology specialties, Dr. Cockerell and Brenda enjoy traveling, golf, and winter sports.


Cockerell Dermatopathology, located in the heart of Dallas’ medical district, was founded by Dr. Clay J. Cockerell, former president of the American Academy of Dermatology and internationally recognized dermatologist and dermatopathologist. Cockerell Dermatopathology offers diagnostic excellence and unparalleled service in evaluating dermatologic disorders ranging from the routine to the most difficult.

Cockerell Dermatopathology continues to invest in the future by implementing advanced technologies within the laboratory to best serve referring clinicians and their patients. These new technologies produce higher quality slides to diagnose, improves turnaround time on routine cases, and allows for quicker deployment of EMR interfaces.

From an academic standpoint, Cockerell Dermatopathology hosts numerous Internet-based continuing education events and has a 14-headed microscope for in-person training sessions. Cockerell Dermatopathology serves hundreds of clinicians from across Texas, the United States, and abroad. With an accessible team of board-certified dermatopathologists and a highly trained support staff, Cockerell Dermatopathology’s vision is to treat every specimen as if it came from one of our own family members.

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