How our practice of Histopathology, especially Tumour Pathology has changed in the last two decades: reflections from a major referral center in Pakistan
Continued advances in the field of histo-pathology (and cyto-pathology) over the past two decades have resulted in dramatic changes in the manner in which these disciplines are now practiced. This is especially true in the setting of a large university hospital where the role of pathologists as clinicians (diagnosticians), undergraduate and postgraduate educators, and researchers has evolved considerably. The world around us has changed significantly during this period bringing about a considerable change in our lifestyles and the way we live. This is the world of the internet and the world-wide web, the world of Google and Wikipedia, of Youtube and Facebook where anyone can obtain any information one desires at the push of a button. The practice of histo (and cyto) pathology has also evolved in line with these changes. For those practicing this discipline in a poor, developing country these changes have been breathtaking. This is an attempt to document these changes as experienced by histo (and cyto) pathologists practicing in the biggest center for Histopathology in Pakistan, a developing country in South Asia with a large (180 million) and ever growing population. The Section of Histopathology, Department of Pathology and Microbiology at the Aga Khan University Hospital (AKUH) in Karachi, Pakistan's largest city has since its inception in the mid-1980s transformed the way histopathology is practiced in Pakistan by incorporating modern methods and rescuing histopathology in Pakistan from the primitive and outdated groove in which it was stuck for decades. It set histopathology in Pakistan firmly on the path of modernity and change which are essential for better patient management and care through accurate and complete diagnosis and more recently prognostic and predictive information as well.