Subspeciality Pathology

Breast Pathology

Breast tissue can develop abnormalities that are sometimes cancerous. Usually breast cancer begins either in the cells of the lobules, which are milk-producing glands, or the ducts, the passages that drain milk from the lobules to the nipple. Breast cancers have many characteristics that help determine the best treatment. A lump or spot in the breast can be made of normal cells or cancer cells. There can also be cells that fall somewhere between normal and cancerous (“atypical” cells). Cancer cells are cells that grow in an uncontrolled way. They may stay in the place where they started to grow, or they may grow into the normal tissue around them. Cancer cells may also spread beyond the breast. The abnormal lump or spot may be found using mammography or other testing methods. A procedure called a biopsy removes a piece of tissue from the lump or spot to find out if cancer cells are present. The pathology report will tell you what kinds of cells are present.

Gynaecologic – Female Genital Tract Pathology

Regular pelvic examinations and Papanicolaou (Pap) tests or other similar tests can lead to the early detection of certain gynecologic cancers, especially cancer of the cervix. Such examinations can sometimes prevent cancer by detecting precancerous changes (dysplasia) before they become cancer. Regular pelvic examinations can also detect early cancers of the vagina and vulva. However, cancers of the ovaries, uterus, and fallopian tubes are not easy for doctors to detect during a pelvic examination.

If cancer is suspected, a biopsy can confirm or rule out the diagnosis. If cancer is diagnosed, one or more procedures may be done to determine the stage of the cancer. The stage is based on how large the cancer is and how far it has spread. Staging a cancer helps doctors choose the best treatment. Doctors often determine the stage of cancer after they remove the cancer and biopsy the surrounding tissues, including lymph nodes.

Gastrointestinal Pathology

Gastrointestinal pathology is the subspecialty of surgical pathology which deals with the diagnosis and characterization of neoplastic and non-neoplastic diseases of the digestive tract and accessory organs, such as the pancreas and liver. It includes colon cancer, pancreatic cancer, stomach cancer, liver cancer, neuroendocrine cancer, and esophageal cancer.

Head & Neck Pathology

Head & Neck Pathology that cover the spectrum of human surgical pathology within the anatomic zones of the oral cavity, sinonasal tract, larynx, hypopharynx, salivary gland, ear and temporal bone, and neck.

Hematolymphoid Pathology

Tumors of the hematopoietic and lymphoid tissues or haematopoietic and lymphoid malignancies are tumors that affect the blood, bone marrow, lymph, and lymphatic system. As those elements are all intimately connected through both the circulatory system and the immune system, a disease affecting one will often affect the others as well,  king myeloproliferation and lymphoproliferation (and thus the leukemias and the lymphomas) closely related and often overlapping problems.

Hepatic, Pancreatic & Biliary Pathology

Pancreatic, hepatic, and biliary carcinomas in adults represent three of the most challenging malignancies facing the oncologist.  Although groups at high risk for these malignancies are recognized, screening and early-detection strategies have not been successful. For each neoplasm, surgery represents the only practical curative treatment option. Radiation and chemotherapy have been helpful only in selected clinical circumstances. Hopefully, our evolving understanding of the molecular biology and cellular biochemistry of these neoplasms will provide new approaches for early detection and therapy.

Lung Pathology

The pathogenesis of lung cancer is like other cancers, beginning with carcinogen-induced initiation events, followed by a long period of promotion and progression in a multistep process. Cigarette smoke both initiates and promotes carcinogenesis. The initiation event happens early on, as evidenced by similar genetic mutations between current and former smokers (e.g. 3p deletion, p53 mutations). Smoking thus causes a “field effect” on the lung epithelium, providing a large population of initiated cells and increasing the chance of transformation. Continued smoke exposure allows additional mutations to accumulate due to promotion by chronic irritation and promoters in cigarette smoke (e.g. nicotine, phenol, formaldehyde). The time delay between smoking onset and cancer onset is typically long, requiring 20-25 years for cancer formation.


Neuropathology is the study of disease of nervous system tissue, usually in the form of either small surgical biopsies or whole-body autopsies. Neuropathology is a subspecialty of anatomic pathology, neurology, and neurosurgery.

Soft tissue & Bone Pathology

The Soft Tissue and Bone Pathology Service of the Division of SurgicalPathology provides comprehensive diagnostic expertise and services relating to thepathology of disorders of the soft tissues, muscle and bone, principally tumors.

Urinary Tract Pathology

Urinary Tract Pathology covers only the urinary tract, specifically the renal parenchyma, the renal pelvis and ureters, the bladder and urethra, and the prostate and seminal vesicles