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Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine
MD Education


"The practice of pathology involves the detection, analysis, and understanding of disease process. As the only branch of medicine considered both a basic science and a clinical specialty, pathology is somewhat unique. By studying tissues, cells, and fluid samples, pathologists unravel the mysteries of how a particular disease arises and develops. To do so, they draw on a variety of methods, ranging from microbiology to molecular biology …The practice of pathology is divided into two primary areas - anatomic and clinical. Anatomic pathologists examine organs, tissues, and cells to diagnose or further characterize a disease process. They make exact diagnoses on specimen from sources including biopsy, fine-needle aspiration, body-fluid analysis, exfoliation, autopsy, and surgery--and the information they provide in the pathology report is used for patient prognostication and management. . ….Clinical pathologists analyze blood, body fluids, or other patient specimens. They are experts in the scientific principles and techniques of laboratory medicine as well as administrative aspects of overseeing a laboratory."

— Freeman, B. (2013). The Ultimate Guide to Choosing a Medical Specialty. 3rd Ed. Lange Medical Books/McGraw-Hill: New York. pp. 354-355.

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Luis Z. Blanco, Jr., MD
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Department of Pathology
Northwestern University
303 E. Chicago Ave.
Ward 6-223 W 127
Chicago, IL 60611-3008
Fax: 312-502-8249