This program is designed to provide fellows with a comprehensive educational experience that is centered on acquiring a broad understanding of the pathogenesis and diagnosis of hematologic disorders. The program emphasizes diagnostic tissue hematopathology, which requires integration of morphologic findings with results obtained with specialized test modalities (immunopathology, flow cytometry, cytogenetics, molecular diagnostics, etc.) and also provides training in the diagnosis of blood disorders and coagulation disorders.
The service processes about 2900 bone marrow biopsies, 500-600 diagnostic lymphoid tissue specimens (lymph nodes, spleens, etc.) and about 2800 consult cases. All bone marrow biopsies are accompanied by a Wright-Giemsa stained aspirate smear.
The Hematopathology Service is a busy and highly interactive environment for trainees, staff and clinicians. Trainees act as consultants in the initial interpretation of data for the Hematology-Oncology Service and play an important role in patient management.
The trainees are involved in presenting pathology material at several conferences for the clinical service:
The Lymphoma Conference (every other week, attended by Pathology, Radiology, Hematology-Oncology and Radiotherapy Divisions) in which interesting and/or complicated lymphoma cases are discussed
The Dana-Farber Cancer Institute (DFCI) weekly conference, in which a disease entity is discussed in detail. (Hematopathology topics predominate roughly once/month) in which a disease is discussed in depth
DFCI new patient conference (weekly conference)
Trainees also present cases for review and discussion at the weekly Hematopathology Interesting Case Conference, attended by senior staff and interested residents.
Fellows are given increasing responsibilities as they progress through the fellowship. However, for legal reasons, senior staff pathologists are responsible for rendering all final diagnoses.
As fellows progress, they have increasing latitude in discussing their opinion with clinicians, ordering special studies on cases, and providing preliminary interpretations of frozen sections. Our goal is to train both academic pathologists and pathologists who will assume positions in private practices.
Generally, individuals pursuing an academic route will spend additional years in basic or clinical research. Fellows who plan a career in private practice will frequently obtain additional training in surgical pathology, often in an additional subspecialty area. The year spent in the Hematopathology Fellowship program provides an excellent basis for achieving either of these ultimate goals.