News, Analysis, Trends, Management Innovations for
Clinical Laboratories and Pathology Groups

Hosted by Robert Michel

News, Analysis, Trends, Management Innovations for
Clinical Laboratories and Pathology Groups

Hosted by Robert Michel
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Pathologist/Researcher Offers Two Suggestions to Reduce Inappropriate Testing and Improve Patient Safety

Whether either or both of these suggestions can be put into practice is the challenge most clinical laboratories face

For Pathologist Ramy A. Arnaout, MD, DPhil, one of the biggest issues all pathologists face today is how to overcome the breakdown in cooperation between pathologists and referring physicians that can cause patient harm.

An Associate Director of the Clinical Microbiology Laboratories at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC), Arnaout was a panel member during a webinar in December sponsored by STAT News and T.H. Chan Harvard School of Public Health. During the webinar, “Medical Tests: Inaccuracies, Risks and the Public’s Health,” Arnaout explained that when errors occur in a lab, they usually happen during test selection and result interpretation, sometimes called the “pre-pre-analytical” and “post-post-analytical” phases. In these two phases of the lab-testing process, pathologists and ordering physicians need to collaborate more closely to help avoid errors and reduce the level of patient harm, he explained. (more…)

Study at Boston’s Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center Determines that 30% of All Clinical Laboratory Tests Are Overused or Medically Unnecessary

BIDMC researchers show that, on average, 30% of all lab tests may be unnecessary and that an equal percentage of tests should not be ordered at all

Every pathologist and clinical laboratory professional knows how often physicians order a medical laboratory test that is inappropriate or unnecessary. That is a problem because, each time a clinician orders an inappropriate test, patient harm is possible. Yet this issue gets little attention from the medical profession at large.

Thus, it is significant that researchers at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC), published a study last fall showing that 30% of all medical laboratory tests throughout medicine are overused! A different 30% of medical laboratory tests are underused, as well. (more…)

Meet the Clinical Pathology Laboratory on the Palm of a Hand: Japanese Researchers Announce a Point-of-Care Testing Device That Detects MicroRNA in 20 Minutes

Second-generation device is self-powered, does not require a trained operator, and amplifies the fluorescence signal by 1,000-fold, enabling early detection of cancer

Pathologists will be interested to learn that Japanese researchers have developed a second-generation lab-on-a-chip that detects microRNA (miRNA) from a tiny sample volume in only 20 minutes! Their goal is to create a point-of-care device for early detection of cancer.

This is another example of how a variety of fast-developing technologies are being brought together to create diagnostic testing systems that have capabilities that challenge the clinical laboratory analyzers used in centralized medical laboratories. (more…)

‘Medical Laboratory Without Walls’ Takes Molecular Diagnostics Testing to Remote Places Down Under

Taking molecular biology into the field is a big step forward in moving molecular diagnostics to the gold standard of microbiology laboratory testing

An Australian pathologist is pioneering a new approach for showcasing the role of pathology and demonstrating the dramatic potential of mobile medical laboratories. His technique: take a molecular diagnostics laboratory on the road—in a suitcase!

High-tech Molecular Pathology Lab Goes Mobile

The concept is a portable molecular microbiology lab, consisting of a series of modules. Timothy Inglis, B.M., D.M., Ph.D., Clinical Microbiology Fellow of the Royal College of Pathologists of Australasia (RCPA) and fellow scientist, Adam J. Merritt, are demonstrating high-tech clinical laboratory equipment in a fully mobile laboratory expedition. Both are employees of PathWest Laboratory Medicine W.A.. A recent story published at reported on the program. (more…)

Non-Invasive Early Diagnostic Pathology Test for Gastric Cancer Developed by University Of Georgia Researchers

New cancer test may be as easy as a home-use pregnancy test

Early detection of certain types of cancer may eventually become as easy as taking a home pregnancy test. That’s the prediction of researchers who are developing a non-invasive early diagnostic test for gastric cancer that would not require a pathologist  to assess a tissue specimen. Instead, this test detects biomarkers in the patient’s urine.

Surgical pathologists will recognize the potential of this discovery to create new tools for diagnosing cancer at earlier stages—and without the need to collect a tissue specimen. For clinical laboratories, the possibility of a urine-based test that could accurately detect different cancers would make it possible for them to offer diagnostic assays based on this technology to office-based physicians.