Short Courses and Special Courses

SC53 – From Pixel to Diagnosis: Introduction to Digital Pathology and Image Analysis

Wednesday, March 21, 2018 - 1:30 pm - 5:30 pm
This Short Course session includes up to a one-hour break.

Session Credits:

3 CME and 3 SAMs


Anil Parwani, MD, PhD, MBA, Dept. of Pathology, The Ohio State University, Columbus OH
Metin Gurcan Ph.D., Center for Biomedical Informatics at Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem, NC

Course Description

With the wide-spread availability of whole-slide scanners, reduced cost storage capabilities, digital pathology is receiving increased interest, because it can enable pathologists to both provide and receive second opinions easily, and also use computer-assisted image analysis tools for better speed and accuracy. Only a few places in the world have implemented these systems so far; therefore, there are several questions in the minds of those who are considering to implement these systems in their practice as well as those who have some experience: how are these going to affect current pathology workflows and practice, what are the legal and regulatory implications, how much of an impact should one anticipate on patient safety, efficiency, workload, collaboration? This course will review for practicing pathologists and residents the current status of the field with some real-life examples by a pathologist and image analysis scientist, working in this field over ten years.

Several vendors are currently working with the FDA to get their digital pathology systems approved for a primary review. A number of image analysis systems have already received FDA clearance. With potentially imminent FDA approval of digital pathology systems, and considering that only a few centers have experience with them, this course is very timely for the practicing pathologists and residents who need to understand the implications of these new technologies and how they may benefit from what they offer.

After introducing the current status of digital pathology, its opportunities and challenges, we will describe how image analysis can help digital pathology as an enabling technology. First, background information in digital pathology and image analysis will be will be introduced with real-life examples drawn our experience in implementing both digital pathology and developing image analysis systems in the last ten years. The learners then will be invited to participate with their questions and comments. The discussion will be guided towards the needs and practical questions of the attendees depending on their level of experience and needs whether they are considering implementing these technologies in their practice, or have already implemented them but are experiencing some challenges.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this educational activity, the learner will be able to:

  • Describe what digital pathology is and the regulatory status
  • Review the current status of image analysis
  • Recognize how image analysis is an enabling technology for digital pathology
  • Explain how digital pathology and image analysis can improve the accuracy and efficiency of the diagnostic process.


Continuing Medical Education and Maintenance of Certification

The United States and Canadian Academy of Pathology is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

The United States and Canadian Academy of Pathology designates this live activity for a maximum of 3 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

The USCAP is approved by the American Board of Pathology (ABP) to offer Self-Assessment credits (SAMs) for the purpose of meeting the ABP requirements for Maintenance of Certification (MOC). Physicians must take and pass the post-test in order to claim SAMs credit.

Physicians can earn a maximum of 3 SAM credit hours.


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