The Institute is split into the Biopsy Unit and the Autopsy Unit.
In addition to light microscopy, analytical techniques available include histochemistry and immunochemistry, DNA cytophotometry and Chromogenic In Situ Hybridisation (CISH). All pathology reports are stored on a central data management system. Instant access to a patient's current as well as archived pathology reports allows an exact assessment of how a patient's condition may have developed over time.
The Biopsy Unit mainly deals with histological examinations of small, endoscopically obtained tissue samples, as well as cytology examinations of cellular material obtained by core needle biopsy, fine needle aspiration or swabbing. Macroscopic examination of tissues is mainly used in diagnosis. However, it can often provide information on disease progression and is therefore also used throughout the treatment process.
The Biopsy Unit also examines larger, surgical specimens, both macroscopically and microscopically, to determine the exact type and extent of disease present. Because of the significant role of the Biopsy Unit, the Pathology Institute works extremely closely with almost all the other medical specialities.
The Autopsy Unit carries out post-mortem examinations to establish underlying disease, the effect of treatment on disease progress and a patient's cause of death.