The Department of Histopathology (Cellular Pathology) includes Diagnostic Histology, Non Gynae Cytology, Andrology and Mortuary Services.
Histology is the study of tissues and organs through examination of their architecture and relationship with other body tissues. Study of the diseases of tissues and organs, such as cancer, is correctly termed histopathology.
Tissues taken from patients, either at surgical procedure or at post-mortem are sent to the Histology laboratory for examination. Tissue is processed to produce wax blocks from which tissue sections (about 4 microns thick) are cut. The sections are collected on to microscope slides, and stained so that cellular structures and details can be seen using a microscope. This process occurs for every tissue sample received.
Specialised techniques to facilitate diagnosis are available including special staining techniques, immunocytochemistry and molecular pathology.
- stains to demonstrate microorganisms such as TB or stains to illustrate damage to connective tissue structure as can be important in liver cirrhosis.
- immunocytochemistry can be used to identify a tumour or variant of a tumour, and is increasingly important as an aide to cancer diagnosis and determining patient treatment.
Non Gynae Cytology
Cytology is the study of cells, and cytopathology is the study of disease at cellular level.
The cellular component of fluid samples are concentrated by centrifugation. A stained preparation is made which is examined microscopically often in conjunction with a histopathology tissue sample. Cell blocks can also be produced to facilitate additional specialist staining techniques.
Andrology services provide information to clinicians on semen samples. Testing can be completed to determine the success of a vasectomy operation or to determine the fertility status of a patient. Fertility analysis includes sperm concentration, sperm motility and sperm morphology.
The Trust has two fully operational mortuaries, one at Doncaster Royal Infirmary and one at Bassetlaw District General Hospital. Post-mortems are completed on the DRI site. The mortuaries cover both hospital and community deaths and provide services to the Doncaster and Nottingham Coroners services.
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