Histopathology is a speciality centred around making diagnoses and deriving prognostic information from the gross and microscopical examination of cytological samples, biopsies and resections from any organ of the body of living patients.
This is a clinical speciality, requiring skill in the interpretation and the communication of the appearances, diagnoses and prognostic indicators of a case. Communication skills are required for the production of written reports as well as for the presentation and discussion of cases at multidisciplinary meetings, with physicians, surgeons, oncologists, radiologists, specialist nurses, and all other members of the multidisciplinary teams.
Many histopathologists also perform autopsies, hospital and coronial, and may, from time to time, be required to present these cases either at hospital mortality meetings or in the coroner’s court.
Within the training programmes, and as consultants, there are abundant opportunities for subspecialisation, and involvement in research and audit, leading to postgraduate degrees, presentations at national and international meetings and publications.
Notable Achievements in Wales
- Wales has national and international renowned expertise in areas such as industrial lung disease, gastrointestinal pathology and immunohistochemistry.
- Cardiff is the base of the Wales Institute of Forensic Medicine and the All Wales Lymphoma Panel.
- FRCPath Examination pass rates are good, higher than the UK average.
Future of the Specialty/Developments in Wales
- Two recent appointments to Forensic Pathology training posts.
- Introduction of subspecialist histopathology reporting in University Hospital of Wales, Cardiff.
- Development of subspecialty training blocks e.g. Colorectal pathology at Llandough Hospital, Cardiff and Breast Pathology at Royal Glamorgan Hospital.
Further information can be found in the “training” section of the Royal College of Pathologists website.