Volker Nickeleit, M.D. and J. Charles Jennette, M.D., The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, NC
Vascular diseases are responsible for significant morbidity and mortality. They can affect multiple organ systems simultaneously or may be very limited. Symptoms caused by vascular diseases are often non-specific. Thus, the morphological examination of a biopsy becomes crucial in the diagnostic decision making process, thereby, pathologists play a central role in "patient management". Pathologists are frequently challenged to provide rapid and specific diagnoses of vascular diseases before intense and potentially harmful treatment regimens are initiated. However, the diversity of morphological patterns and the confusing terminology used both clinically and in the pathology literature can cause major problems for pathologists "in the hot seat" and compromise accurate diagnostic decision making.
The aim of this short course is to provide a general didactic, predominantly case-based presentation of the more common and problematic vascular disorders with a major focus on the morphological and pertinent pathophysiological aspects. Examples of vascular disease in various organs will be presented, with an emphasis on kidney, lungs and skin specimens due to the high frequency with which these organs are affected by vascular diseases. The course will be divided into three main blocks and will cover: vasculitides, vasculopathies (e.g. thrombotic microangiopathies such as HUS and TTP) and transplant vasculopathies (focusing on different forms of vascular diseases seen in renal transplants and including vascular rejection). Our goal is to provide a systemic approach to the diagnostic evaluation of vascular lesions based on morphological findings, the use of ancillary techniques (e.g. serology) and correlation with the clinical observations and therapeutic implications.
This course should help pathologists render specific diagnoses using an algorithmic approach. At the end of each main block, a short quiz will highlight key concepts. Our course is suitable for practicing general pathologists, pathology residents and fellows. Our main goal is to make practicing pathologists proficient in the diagnosis of a broad range of vascular diseases. Registrants will be mailed a CD of images prior to the meeting. An extensive syllabus will be distributed at the time of the course. A CD-ROM of the course materials will be mailed after the meeting.