Pathology is the study of the causes and effects of disease; it is a more hands-on science with examination of body tissues for diagnosis and forensic motivations. It is an interdisciplinary science as it draws knowledge from microbiology, cellular biology, chemistry and biostatistics.
Pathology identifies four components of disease: first is cause, second is mechanisms of development, third is the morphological changes of cells and finally the consequences of such changes.1 Pathology is then divided into two studies: dermatopathology that studies body systems or forensic pathology that identifies the cause of death.
There are many subdivisions of pathology such as clinical, anatomical or general pathology. In clinical pathology, bodily fluids like blood, urine and tissue is analytically examined to find indicators of disease. An example of an indicator could be blood count. In anatomical pathology, autopsies examine organ systems to find cause of death in qualitative indicators like cell appearance. General pathology looks for diseases in the structural changes in organs.
1. Robbins, S. (2010) Robbins and Contran pathologic basis of disease (8th ed.). Philadelphia: Saunders/Elsevier.