Doctor General-Clinical Pathology

 What Is General-Clinical Pathology?

Pathology is the study and analysis of disorder via exam of organs, tissues, physical fluids, and whole our bodies (autopsies). The history of pathology can be traced to the earliest software of the scientific technique to the field of drugs, a development which happened within the Middle East throughout the Islamic Golden Age and in Western Europe during the Italian Renaissance.

Early systematic human dissections have been executed by means of the Ancient Greek physicians Herophilus of Chalcedon and Erasistratus of Chios in the early part of the 0.33 century BC. The first doctor recognised to have made postmortem dissections changed into the Arabian doctor Avenzoar (1091–1161). Rudolf Virchow (1821–1902) is commonly diagnosed to be the father of microscopic pathology. Most early pathologists had been additionally working towards physicians or surgeons.

  • Pathology is the clinical uniqueness involved with the examination of the character and reasons of illnesses. It underpins each factor of drugs, from diagnostic checking out and tracking of chronic illnesses to current genetic research and blood transfusion technologies. Pathology is quintessential to the prognosis of each cancer.
  • Pathology plays an essential position across all sides of medication at some stage in our lives, from pre-concept to post mortem. In reality it has been stated that "Medicine IS Pathology".
  • Due to the recognition of many television applications, the word ‘pathology’ conjures photos of useless bodies and those in lab coats investigating the motive of suspicious deaths for the police. That's genuinely a side of pathology, however in reality it’s always much more likely that pathologists are busy in a medical institution or laboratory assisting dwelling human beings.
  • Pathologists are specialist medical practitioners who take a look at the cause of disorder and the methods in which diseases affect our bodies by analyzing adjustments inside the tissues and in blood and other frame fluids. Some of those changes show the capability to broaden an ailment, even as others display its presence, cause or severity or screen its development or the outcomes of treatment.
  • The docs you spot in surgical treatment or at a medical institution all depend upon the know-how, diagnostic talents and advice of pathologists. Whether it’s a GP arranging a blood check or a healthcare professional trying to recognize the nature of the lump eliminated at operation, the definitive solution is normally supplied with the aid of a pathologist. Some pathologists also see sufferers and are involved immediately in the everyday transport of patient care.

Medical Term

General clinical pathology, often referred to as clinical pathology or laboratory medicine, is a medical specialty that focuses on the diagnosis and management of disease through laboratory analysis of bodily fluids and tissues. It is an essential branch of medicine that plays a crucial role in patient care and the overall healthcare system.

Clinical pathologists, also known as clinical laboratory scientists or medical laboratory professionals, are trained experts responsible for performing a wide range of diagnostic tests and interpreting the results to aid in the diagnosis and treatment of various medical conditions. These tests help physicians and healthcare providers understand the underlying causes of diseases, monitor the progression of illnesses, and assess the effectiveness of treatments.

The major components of general clinical pathology include:

  • Clinical Chemistry: This involves the analysis of blood, urine, and other body fluids to measure levels of various substances, such as glucose, cholesterol, electrolytes, enzymes, and hormones. These tests are critical for assessing organ function, diagnosing metabolic disorders, and monitoring drug therapies.

  • Hematology: This focuses on the study of blood and its components, including red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets. Hematological tests help in the diagnosis of various blood-related disorders, such as anemia, leukemia, and clotting disorders.

  • Microbiology: This branch deals with the identification of infectious agents, such as bacteria, viruses, fungi, and parasites, from patient samples like blood, urine, and swabs. It aids in diagnosing infections and determining the appropriate antimicrobial treatment.

  • Immunology and Serology: These disciplines involve the study of the immune system and the detection of antibodies or antigens in the blood. Tests in this area help diagnose immune-related diseases and assess a patient's immune response to infections or vaccinations.

  • Transfusion Medicine: This field deals with blood typing, cross-matching, and ensuring the safe and appropriate use of blood products during transfusions.

  • Molecular Pathology: This relatively newer area combines laboratory techniques with molecular biology to study genetic and molecular changes in diseases, enabling personalized medicine and targeted therapies.

Clinical pathologists work closely with other healthcare professionals, including physicians, surgeons, and specialists, to provide valuable insights into the patient's health status. Their work helps in making accurate diagnoses, monitoring disease progression, evaluating treatment responses, and improving patient outcomes.

It's important to note that clinical pathology complements anatomical pathology, which involves the examination of tissue samples obtained through biopsies, autopsies, or surgical procedures. Together, these two branches of pathology play a crucial role in the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of diseases.

Pathology offerings lie at the coronary heart of fitness care offerings supplied to sufferers.  They underpin the excellent and value effectiveness of health care.

  • Pathology is a clinical knowledge service that is fundamental to modern medical practice and health care.

  • Pathology is used inside the diagnosis, remedy and control of a growing variety of medical situations.

  • Over 70% consistent with cent of all health care decisions affecting prognosis or remedy involve pathology research.  All cancer diagnoses involve pathology.

  • In the general exercise putting, the BEACH Study of General Practice Activity of the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) reports that pathology testing is ordered at one in each five affected person visits.

  • The BEACH examination also suggests that, in the Australian number one care placing, 40% of pathology trying out is used for diagnostic purposes, 40% for monitoring and 20% for preventative purposes.

Pathology Disciplines

There are nine major areas of activity in pathology.

  • Anatomical pathology deals with the tissue diagnosis of disease, usually from biopsy materials taken from a patient.

  • Chemical pathology (biochemistry) detects electrolytes, enzymes, proteins, vitamins, hormones, tumor (cancer) markers, poisons and both therapeutic and illicit drugs.

  • Forensic pathology deals with the medicolegal investigations of sudden or unexpected death.

  • Genetics involves tests on chromosomes, DNA and specific biochemical markers to diagnose genetic diseases.

  • Hematology deals with diseases which affect the blood and transfusion medicine.

  • Immunology deals with allergies and auto-immune diseases.

  • Microbiology deals with bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites.  Microbiology is also involved in dealing with the control of infectious disease outbreaks and antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

  • General Pathology covers all areas of pathology at less specialized levels.

  • Clinical Pathology is similar to General Pathology but clinical pathologists do not perform anatomical pathology.  Clinical Pathologists are usually trained in chemical pathology, microbiology, hematology and blood banking.

Related sub-specialties:

What is a clinical pathology test?

A clinical pathology test is a test that provides information about the functioning and health of your body. Clinical pathologists are medical professionals who diagnose disease based on the results of these tests. Each test examines different aspects of how your body works such as detecting infections and inflammation, monitoring organ function or screening for certain conditions.

What does clinical mean in healthcare?

Clinical refers to something that is related to or connected with a hospital or clinic It can also describe something that is performed in a real-life situation and is not simply theoretical For example clinical trials are medical studies that test new treatments on human volunteers and doctors who have done their residency are said to be "in clinical practice.

What is a clinical diagnosis?

A clinical diagnosis is a medical term used to identify and classify diseases based on the signs and symptoms a person experiences Diagnosis is an important part of any treatment plan because it allows doctors to determine which treatments are most likely to be effective The process of arriving at a diagnosis begins with the history and physical exam and can include imaging tests or laboratory work A doctor will come up with the most likely diagnosis based on all of these findings and will then confirm it by either eliminating other possible causes or ruling them out through further testing.

Anatomical pathology

Anatomical Pathology is the branch of pathology that deals with the tissue prognosis of sickness. For this, Anatomical Pathologists need a huge-primarily based expertise and expertise of the pathological and clinical factors of many illnesses.

The tissue on which the diagnosis is made can be biopsy fabric taken from an affected person in the operating theater, on the ward or from a post-mortem (autopsy). The latter is a small but important element of the paintings for organizing the cause in instances of unexpected or unexpected loss of life, for inspecting disease progression, consisting of the reaction to treatment or loss of a reaction, and in crook cases (forensic pathology) assisting police in their investigations. The paintings of most Anatomical Pathologists is, however, on tissue from residing patients. A huge part of that is the detection and analysis of cancer. A tissue prognosis is critical earlier than starting remedy regarding main surgery, radiation or drugs, remedies which may additionally have main aspect effects.

Modern Anatomical Pathologists no longer look at best samples of strong tissue, but additionally small specimens of  separated cells. This is the subspecialty of Cytology. The specimens include fluids and tissue smears specially for prognosis and prevention of most cancers. The pathologist collects a number of those samples themselves, as an instance, for the analysis of cancer of the breast or the prostate. Often this means that a sure prognosis may be made before the patient has left the clinic. New strategies additionally allow samples of either separated cells or small tissue fragments to be obtained from organs, which includes the pancreas, situated deep inside frame cavities.

Chemical Pathology

Chemical Pathology is every other area within the field of Pathology which offers a complete variety of diseases. It encompasses detecting changes in an extensive variety of materials in blood and body fluids (electrolytes, enzymes and proteins) in association with many illnesses. In addition, it involves detecting and measuring tumor (most cancers) markers, hormones, poisons and both therapeutic and illicit pills. For instance Chemical Pathologists are involved in assessing degrees of iron inside the blood, measuring the levels of enzymes which can be launched into the blood after a coronary heart attack to help in the prognosis, and inside the dimension of sure proteins produced by means of cancers to monitor the response to their treatment.

As with the alternative scientific pathology specialties, the biggest part of a Chemical Pathologist's day is generally spent in medical liaison. This involves advising clinicians approximately the correct tests for the investigation of a specific scientific problem, the translation of outcomes and observation-up, and the effect of interferences e.g. by using healing tablets to take a look at effects. The operating day additionally has a big issue devoted to the validation and interpretation of check effects, specially for surprisingly extraordinary outcomes or greater uncommon and pretty specialized checks.

Evaluation of new generation and the improvement of recent tests is an ongoing technique in Chemical Pathology. This applies especially to areas which might be now starting up, inclusive of the use of molecular biology strategies in diagnostic exams. Specialist areas of interest include such subjects as inherited metabolic illnesses, trace metals and environmental tracking, pills of abuse, and vitamins.

A Clinical Pathologist

A Clinical Pathologist is acquainted with the essential factors of the medical branches of laboratory medication. He or she is generally skilled in chemical pathology, microbiology, hematology and blood banking, even though no longer as a great deal element as subspecialists in every discipline. Their function is much like a General Pathologists however not like General Pathologists they do no longer do Anatomical Pathology. A clinical pathologist could generally paint in a medium sized non-public exercise, community sanatorium or a big US city or different non-metropolitan center. For troubles disturbing precise information they would talk over with greater specialized colleagues. Some, however, also work as a part of the team in massive metropolitan public or private practices in particular in handling not unusual excessive volume checks from a couple of area.

Forensic Pathology

Forensic Pathology is the subspecialty of Pathology that makes a speciality of medicolegal investigations of sudden or surprising death.

A Forensic Pathologist is often concerned with identifying the purpose of death and reconstructing the situations by which the dying occurred. This is completed in a meticulous, painstaking way. A primary element of the position involves the performance of post-mortem examinations to each the external and inner body organs to find out the motive of demise. They also have a look at tissue samples from bodies beneath the microscope to assist in establishing the underlying pathological foundation for the reason of death.

A General Pathologist

A General Pathologist is familiar with the main aspects of all branches of laboratory medication described above. He or she is typically trained in anatomical pathology, cytology, chemical pathology, microbiology, hematology and blood banking, although now not as many elements as subspecialists in every discipline. A trendy pathologist could generally work in a medium sized personal exercise, community medical institution or a large united states town or other non-metropolitan center. For issues demanding particular knowledge they could discuss with extra specialized colleagues.

Some, however, additionally painted as a part of the group in big metropolitan public or non-public practices in particular in managing common high volume checks from a couple of disciplines.

The two main branches of genetic pathology 

  • Biochemical Genetics which includes,

Population-based screening for inborn errors of metabolism by enzyme, protein and metabolite assays; and, diagnostic screening for inborn errors of metabolism in symptomatic patients by analysis of metabolites such as organic acids and amino acids;

Diagnostic assays for specific disorders by analysis of specific analytes in body fluids, enzymatic studies, or DNA studies of specific genes;

Predictive assays in unaffected relatives (or a fetus) to determine the risk of developing the disorder known to be present in the family;

Pedigree analysis and diagnostic assessment of segregation in kindreds of disease-causing mutations or genomic regions

Monitoring the biochemical status of patients for long term care or to guide acute care in metabolic crises.

  • Medical Genomics which includes,

Diagnostic detection and interpretation of genomic/ epigenomic variants in symptomatic patients (children, adults, fetuses);

Pedigree analysis and diagnostic assessment of segregation in kindreds of disease-causing mutations or genomic regions;

Diagnostic detection and interpretation of mosaic genomic variants, e.g. in cancer, pregnancy, and inherited diseases (e.g. tumor material; constitutional mosaicism; fetal DNA in maternal blood, circulating tumor DNA etc.) and quantitative assessment of mosaic genomic variants;


Hematology is another swiftly growing area which deals with many factors of these diseases which have an effect on the blood such as anemia, leukemia, lymphoma, and clotting or bleeding disorders. Another vital activity is the control of blood transfusion offerings. Many hematologists are involved, no longer handiest inside the laboratory diagnosis and management of patients with blood illnesses, but as medical consultants. They also offer recommendations on the diagnosis and management of patients noted through clinical colleagues, wherein the sickness affects a few elements of the affected person's blood. In standard phrases, it describes the variety and diversity of activities undertaken by using hematologists at both a laboratory and scientific stage, which gives the major attraction of this subject.


Immunology is a distinctiveness, like hematology, which frequently entails  each laboratory medication (the trying out of specimens amassed from patients) and medical practice (interviewing, inspecting and advising sufferers about clinical troubles).

In the laboratory, immunologists are involved inside the layout, performance and supervision of tests of the immune gadget. These encompass, as an example, trying out for "hypersensitivity antibodies" (IgE) to determine whether or not patients have hypersensitive reactions to various substances, the dimension of various instructions of antibody proteins to decide the country of the immune machine's defense mechanisms, or monitoring the level of T-lymphocytes, the cells that disappear after HIV contamination.

Clinical activities of an Immunopathologist include providing recommendation on a wide kind of different disorders such as recurrent miscarriage and a few regions of transplantation remedy. They will also be without delay worried in coping with patients with autoimmune diseases and AIDS


Microbiology deals with illnesses because of infectious sellers consisting of microorganisms, viruses, fungi and parasites. Microbiologists have roles both inside the laboratory and immediately in affected person care. It offers involvement in a spectrum of sports ranging across:

  • basic laboratory science

  • direct patient care

  • public health

  • infection control

  • research and teaching

  • business management

The ultimate  a long time has seen vast exchange in Medical Microbiology. 'New' organisms (Helicobacter pylori, HIV, Hepatitis C virus) had been located and characterized. 'New' infectious illnesses (AIDS, Lyme disease, and Legionnaires' disorder) were described. 'Old' infections (tuberculosis, malaria, and pertussis)have re-emerged as principal threats and have turned out to be an increasing number of resistant to previously effective antibiotics (MRSA, Streptococcus pneumoniae, VRE).

Over this time, advances in technology and molecular medicine (automation, polymerase chain response) have been introduced significantly to the Microbiologist's diagnostic armamentarium. At the same time however, Microbiology remains very much a 'palms-on' area. In many approaches it's far an artwork as a great deal as a science, and one wherein a person pathologist's revel in, judgment and interpretive competencies are pivotal.

Clinical elements contain manipulation of outbreaks of infectious disease and handling the issues of infections resulting from antibiotic-resistant microorganisms.

Types of specimens used in clinical pathology


Blood is used in many tests. It can be checked in these ways:

  • As a "whole"

  • As the fluid left when red and white blood cells are removed (plasma)

  • As a clear fluid that separates from blood when it clots (serum)

Blood is regularly drawn with a needle from a vein, regularly within the forearm. Sometimes the end of the finger is pricked and then squeezed to draw blood.


Urine is also used for many tests. Urine samples can be collected by:

  • Random method. The person urinates in a cup or larger container (if 24-hour collection).

  • Clean catch specimen. The outer genital area has been cleaned before urinating in a cup.

  • Sterile urine test. This needs catheterization. A tube is put into the urethra and goes to the bladder to get urine.

  • Sometimes a healthcare company will need you to do a timed take a look at. This is to measure substances passed into the urine over numerous hours.

Sputum (phlegm)

Sputum can be coughed into a clean container.

Stool (feces)

Stool is often collected by the person in a clean cardboard or plastic container.

Other body fluids

Other body fluids collected for testing may include:

  • Spinal fluid

  • Pleural fluids. These fluids are around the lungs or in the space between the 2 membranes that surround the lungs (pleural cavity).

  • Belly fluids

  • Joint fluids

  • Bone marrow

What is the difference between pathology and clinical pathology?

Pathology is the study of changes that occur in the body due to a disease while clinical pathology is the laboratory examination and analysis of bodily substances such as blood urine and other body fluids The findings of these tests are used to diagnose diseases and health conditions.

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