Lennart Emtestam group - Skin diseases

Since the 1980's, the group has worked with non-invasive measuring techniques for aid in the diagnosis of the skin. The methods are based on the principle that pathological tissue has different physical properties compared to normal skin.

Group leader


Lennart Emtestam

H7 Department of Medicine, Huddinge

Lennart Emtestam manages the skin disease research group at the Infectious Diseases and Dermatology Unit at the Department of Medicine, Huddinge. Lennart is a physician at the Department of Dermatology, Karolinska University Hospital in Stockholm. He was appointed Professor of Dermatology and Venereology at Karolinska Institutet in 2003. 


1. Skin cancer diagnostic tool using electrical impedance spectroscopy

This project includes work with a non-invasive tool based on electrical impedance for distinguishing various pathological tissue from normal skin. The project is under commercialization. For more information about the project, visit scibase.com

Main collaborator:


  • Edvard Welander Foundation
  • Finsen foundation
  • Cancer and Allergy Foundation
  • Stockholm City Council
  • Karolinska Institutet

2. Skin cancer diagnostic tool based on micromachined interface for high-resolution THz spectroscopy (MTSSC)

This project focuses on developing a micromachined interface for microwave/THz characterization of skin tissue, mainly for distinguishing skin anomalies from healthy tissue and for distinguishing malignant and benign skin tumors.


  • KTH-EE-MST-RF MEMS (Joachim Oberhammer)
  • Uppsala University (UU) - Signals and Systems (Anders Rydberg)
  • Optiga AB (Lars Tenerz)


  • Vinnova
  • Edvard Welander Foundation
  • Finsen Foundation

3. Hidradenitis suppurativa

Hidradenitis suppurativa is a cicatrizing and frequently persistent inflammatory disorder of the sebaceous follicles and terminal hair follicles of apocrine gland-bearing areas in the adult. This project started in the 1980's and focuses on investigating different aspects of the disease, including treatment, etiology and epidemiology. Two important contributions to the scientific community from the group: First, a minimal-invasive carbon dioxide laser treatment was developed by Jan Lapins. Second, the internationally established "Sartorius Score" a disease severity assessment tool was proposed by Karin Sartorius.


  • Copenhagen University (Gregor Jemec)
  • University Hospital of Northern Norway (Gisli Ingvarsson)


  • Edvard Welander Foundation
  • Finsen foundation
  • Cancer and Allergy Foundation
  • Stockholm City Council
  • Karolinska Institutet

Selected publications

Show all publications (PubMed)

  1. Emtestam L, Sartorius S. Skin signs of internal malignancy. In Rook’s Textbook of Dermatology, Ninth Edition. Eds. Griffiths CEM, Chalmers RJG, Burns T. London 2023. Wiley Blackwell. Printing in process.
  2. A growing family of outcome measurement proposals for hidradenitis suppurativa.
    Emtestam L, Lapins J, Sartorius K
    Br J Dermatol 2021 May;184(5):796-798 PMID: 33398878. Free PMC article.
  3. Clinical characteristics of pediatric hidradenitis suppurativa: a cross-sectional multicenter study of 140 patients.
    Riis PT, Saunte DM, Sigsgaard V, Villani AP, Guillem P, Pascual JC, Kappe NN, Vanlaerhoven AMJD, van der Zee HH, Prens EP, El-Domyati M, Abdel-Wahab H, Moftah N, Abdelghani R, Agut-Busquet E, Romaní J, Hlela C, van den Worm L, Bettoli V, Calamo G, Gürer MA, Beksaç B, Matusiak L, Glowaczewska A, Szepietowski JC, Emtestam L, Lapins J, Kottb HR, Fatani M, Weibel L, Theiler M, Delage-Toriel M, Lam TTH, Nassif A, Becherel PA, Dolenc-Voljc M, Doss N, Bouazzi D, Benhadou F, Del Marmol V, Jemec GBE
    Arch Dermatol Res 2020 Dec;312(10):715-724 PMID: 32166376
  4. Hidradenitis Suppurativa in Sweden: A Registry-Based Cross-Sectional Study of 13,538 Patients.
    Killasli H, Sartorius K, Emtestam L, Svensson Å
    Dermatology 2020 ;236(4):281-288. PMID32015234
  5. Interleukin-36 cytokine family signalling in hidradenitis suppurativa.
    Emtestam L, Sartorius K
    Br J Dermatol 2018 Mar;178(3):591-592. PMID29595232. No abstract available.
  6. Towards global consensus on core outcomes for hidradenitis suppurativa research: an update from the HISTORIC consensus meetings I and II.
    Thorlacius L, Garg A, Ingram JR, Villumsen B, Theut Riis P, Gottlieb AB, Merola JF, Dellavalle R, Ardon C, Baba R, Bechara FG, Cohen AD, Daham N, Davis M, Emtestam L, Fernández-Peñas P, Filippelli M, Gibbons A, Grant T, Guilbault S, Gulliver S, Harris C, Harvent C, Houston K, Kirby JS, Matusiak L, Mehdizadeh A, Mojica T, Okun M, Orgill D, Pallack L, Parks-Miller A, Prens EP, Randell S, Rogers C, Rosen CF, Choon SE, van der Zee HH, Christensen R, Jemec GBE
    Br J Dermatol 2018 Mar;178(3):715-721. PMID29080368. Free PMC article.
  7. Low and high body mass index in hidradenitis suppurativa patients-different subtypes?
    Theut Riis P, Saunte DM, Benhadou F, Del Marmol V, Guillem P, El-Domyati M, Abdel-Wahab H, Antoniou C, Dessinioti C, Gürer MA, Beksaç B, Szepietowski JC, Matusiak L, Emtestam L, Lapins J, Riad H, Doss N, Massa AF, Hamzavi I, Nicholson C, Dolenc-Voljc M, Kim KH, Ohn J, Zouboulis CC, Karagiannidis I, Mokos ZB, Durinec P, Jemec GBE
    J Eur Acad Dermatol Venereol 2018 Feb;32(2):307-312. PMID28940801
  8. Glucagon-like peptide-1 agonists for treatment of hidradenitis suppurativa.
    Emtestam L, Sartorius K
    Br J Dermatol 2017 Sep;177(3):625-627. PMID28940285. No abstract available.
  9. Carbon Dioxide Laser Treatment Using Methylene Blue-Assisted Sinus Tract Identification in Hidradenitis Suppurativa.
    Emtestam L, Lapins J, Sartorius K
    Dermatol Surg 2017 Apr;43(4):604-605. PMID28263194. No abstract available.
  10. Intralesional triamcinolone for flares of hidradenitis suppurativa (HS): A case series.
    Riis PT, Boer J, Prens EP, Saunte DM, Deckers IE, Emtestam L, Sartorius K, Jemec GB
    J Am Acad Dermatol 2016 Dec;75(6):1151-1155. PMID27692735
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