Any significant abnormality noted along the lining of the digestive tract during endoscopy is typically biopsied for microscopic examination. This includes tissue obtained from areas of ulceration, inflammation and infection as well as polyps and tumors. Occasionally we may also biopsy endoscopically normal appearing tissue for further inspection under the microscope. Typically this occurs in the setting of patients being evaluated for eosinophilic esophagitis, H. pylori infection, celiac disease, microscopic colitis and dysplasia in the case of chronic ulcerative colitis. The tissue specimens that are obtained during endoscopy are placed in small canisters containing formaldehyde solution for fixation and submitted to our in-office histopathology laboratory for further processing. All of our pathology slides are read by a group of local pathologists for interpretation. The report is then relayed to the gastroenterologist and the information is then shared with the patient and referring physician.
Pathology services are also important in the diagnosis and staging of chronic liver disease and its management.