It was at this time that a project was presented to establish new dermatology hospitals in the regions of Lisbon, Coimbra, and Porto, and the head nurse of the Lisbon Civil Hospitals allowed the use of a dermatology service room in Hospital do Desterro for this museum.
The museum houses a collection of 266 wax figures representing different lesions caused by accidents and diseases. The name is a tribute to the dermatologist Dr. Luís Alberto de Sá Penella. The collection comes from the dermatology service of Hospital dos Capuchos, with the pieces designed by the professor from the School of Fine Arts, Joaquim Barreiros, and the painter Albino Cunha, as well as from Hospital do Desterro, whose authorship is uncertain. These are eerie pieces created from molds taken from patients who arrived at the hospitals, generating a plaster cast of the skin lesion.
The molds were actually made on the patients themselves, in diseases that are now extinct, such as syphilitic gummata, Nicholas Favre disease, cutaneous tuberculosis, and alterations caused by inorganic arsenic. From the molds, the wax pieces were crafted and painted.
In 2007, the hospital closed, and the museum was transferred to the Noble Hall of Hospital dos Capuchos, where it now attracts many horror enthusiasts.