Test Catalog

Interpretive Handbook

Test 70012 :
Pathology Consultation

Clinical Information Discusses physiology, pathophysiology, and general clinical aspects, as they relate to a laboratory test

Mayo Clinic Rochester is staffed by pathologists whose expertise and special interests cover the entirety of pathology-from surgical pathology with all of its respective subspecialty areas, to Hematopathology, Renal Pathology, and Dermatopathology.


We provide consultation services on difficult diagnostic problems. Consultation cases may be sent by a referring pathologist and directed to one of the pathologists who is an expert in the given area or directed more broadly to the subspecialty group. Cases are frequently shared and sometimes transferred between the pathologists, as deemed appropriate for the type of case or diagnostic problem encountered. Emphasis is placed on prompt and accurate results. Stained slides and paraffin blocks received are reviewed in conjunction with the clinical history provided, laboratory findings, radiographic findings (if applicable), and sending pathologist's report or letter. If additional special stains or studies are needed, the results are included in the final interpretive report. In some cases, electron microscopy and other special procedures are utilized as required.


A variety of ancillary studies are available (eg, cytochemistry, immunohistochemistry, immunofluorescence, electron microscopy, mass spectrometry, cytogenetics, and molecular genetics) to aid in establishing a diagnosis. These ancillary studies are often expensive and labor intensive, and are most efficiently utilized and interpreted in the context of the morphologic features.


It is our goal to provide the highest possible level of diagnostic consultative service, while trying to balance optimal patient care with a cost-conscious approach to solving difficult diagnostic problems.

Useful For Suggests clinical disorders or settings where the test may be helpful

Obtaining a rapid, expert second opinion on specimens referred by the primary pathologist


Obtaining special studies not available locally

Interpretation Provides information to assist in interpretation of the test results

Results of the consultation are reported in a formal pathology report that includes a description of ancillary test results (if applicable) and an interpretive comment. When the case is completed, results are communicated by a phone call. The formal pathology report is faxed.


In our consultative practice, we strive to bring the customer the highest quality of diagnostic pathology, in all areas of expertise, aiming to utilize only those ancillary tests that support the diagnosis in a cost-effective manner, and to provide a rapid turnaround time for diagnostic results.

Cautions Discusses conditions that may cause diagnostic confusion, including improper specimen collection and handling, inappropriate test selection, and interfering substances

This test is not intended to be used to obtain a primary diagnosis. Hematopathology, medical renal pathology, and dermatopathology primary consultation can be provided by separate tests (70016 / Hematopathology Consultation, Wet Tissue; 70064 / Renal Pathology Consultation, Wet Tissue; 4339 / DermPath Consultation, Wet Tissue). Otherwise, primary interpretation should be performed by a local pathology service and Mayo will render a second opinion if requested.


Appropriate stained and unstained slides and tissue sampling and fixation is required in order to make a diagnosis on routine stains and on the special stains or studies that may be required.


The referring pathologist's name and phone number are essential.


Specific diagnosis may require correlation with clinical information.

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