To understand the scope of our work, the following tests/procedures were done in one year:
Bone Marrow (stem cell) lab. 237
Mollecular lab 696
HLA lab 1631
Flow Cytometry 5.597
Blood Bank 37,711
What is the role of the pathologist?
Many medical conditions, including all cases of cancer, must be diagnosed by removing a sample of tissue from the patient and sending it to a pathologist for examination. This procedure is called a biopsy, a Greek-derived word that may be loosely translated as "view of the living." Any organ in the body can be biopsied using a variety of techniques, some of which require major surgery (e.g., staging splenectomy for Hodgkin's disease), while others do not even require local anesthesia (e.g., fine needle aspiration biopsy of thyroid, breast, lung, liver, etc). After the biopsy specimen is obtained by the doctor, it is sent for examination to another doctor, the anatomical pathologist, who prepares a written report with information designed to help the primary doctor manage the patient's condition properly.
The pathologist is a physician specializing in rendering medical diagnoses by examination of tissues and fluids removed from the body. The pathologist begins the examination of the specimen by dictating a description of the specimen as it looks to the naked eye. This is the "gross exam" or the "gross." Some pathologists may refer to the gross exam as the "macroscopic." The microscopic description, or the "micro", is a narrative description of the findings gained from examination of the glass slides under the microscope. The purpose of the gross examination, the processing of the tissue, and the microscopic examination is to build a logical argument toward a terse assessment of what significance the biopsy has in regard to the patient's health.
Why is our service unique?
In cancer, the correct diagnosis is essential for determining the correct treatment options and prognosis. The pathology department in any cancer institution forms the cornerstone of this service by ensuring the availability of the correct diagnostic tests and the skills to interpret the results. Our Pathology department has added numerous key diagnostic tests important for cancer diagnosis and treatment follow-up, and has recruited several highly qualified pathologists to interpret the results. The department reviews all referral cases and has made major diagnostic changes in 88/1217 (7.2%) of the referred cases [2005 data].
Pathologists are also key members of multimodality teams and clinics, tumor boards, and all patient care and educational activities. They work hard to guarantee the accuracy of internal and external pathology data that are vital in planning patient care.