Relationship of Dermatologist-Pathologist | Working Together to Achieve Better Outcomes

by The DermEngine Team on Jun 21, 2024

Dermatologists and pathologists share a close connection in their professions. The work of one is the most critical component of the other, impacting patient outcome and treatment planning. The result is the need for clear, connected pathways for the communication and documentation between these two professionals. How can technology be leveraged to empower a better connection between the two and improve patient services? Let's explore the significance in the relationship between a dermatologist and pathologist.

1. What is the role of the dermatologist?

dermatologist is a medical doctor of hair, skin, and nails. They help diagnose and treat various skin conditions including acne, eczema, psoriasis, as well as skin cancers such as melanoma. In their workflow, a dermatologist can see a patient for a suspicious lesion and require a biopsy for further examination. This is when the dermatologist will make a pathology lab request and physically send the specimen in for examination.

2. What is the role of the pathologist?

When the sample is received by the pathology lab, the pathologist can analyze the tissue sample to determine the presence and type of disease, providing crucial diagnostic information. This can happen in a center away from where the sample was originally taken. In some cases, it can travel a significant distance before reaching the specialized pathology lab. Once the analysis is complete, the pathologist can prepare the detailed report to guide the dermatologist in developing an effective treatment plan for their patient. This is when that information is relayed back to the dermatologist, whether by mail-in physical report or a digital copy if that is available.

DermEngine-pathology-integration3. Why does this connection matter?

The impact is ultimately felt on the patient. How connected these two professionals are impacts the experience that the patient has. Does the infrastructure exist to support communication for these healthcare professionals? Can technology help facilitate the secure, fast documentation between these two? In many cases, those in separate fields do not have the chance to collaborate effectively because of the barriers likely present in their current fields; the effort to bridge any separate fields is less likely. This means that a potential solution using existing technologies is more likely. 


The need for clear, connected workflows in communication and documentation begs the question, whether technology can be part of the solution. What’s definite is a solution that is easy to adopt, with minimal disruptions; that is easy to use and intuitive since doctors are busy- would be the most realistic solution. Technologies such as cloud-based systems could present a potential solution as it allows for the secure sharing of patient data across networks. Some EMR software that are cloud-based can have integration with third-party providers, so actions that are repeatedly done, like submitting a lab request, can be done in a click of a button. Innovations like these are essential as the connection between a dermatologist and their pathology lab partner is an integral part of healthcare workflows. 

-The MetaOptima Team

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Topics: Pathology Cloud Based EMR dermatologist