Definition: A dermal punch is the same instrument used by doctors to obtain biopsy samples. It cuts away a section of flesh by punching a hole through it. The dermal punch method is as traumatic to the skin as it sounds, but it is sometimes preferred over tapering for cartilage piercings. Cartilage, due to the lack of blood flow and its vulnerability, can actually be damaged under the pressure of tapered stretching. The dermal punch can also be used to stretch several gauges at once, but it is still only recommended for cartilage, not soft tissue.