Head and Neck Pathology Center of Excellence

FNA slide from a metastatic renal cell carninoma in an enlarged thyroid


Mission Statement

Our Mission is to train fellows who are competent to enter either the academic or private sectors of medicine, with the following objectives:

  • To teach the fellow the proper means of examining a broad spectrum of surgical specimens.
  • To instill confidence in performing operating room consultations [frozen sections] and interacting with surgeons.
  • To appreciate the necessity of clinical-pathological correlations of surgical pathology specimens.
  • To make the fellow aware of new techniques, methodologies and molecular procedures.

Clinical Services

Head and Neck/Endocrine specimens are triaged from three institutions in the health system (UPMC Presbyterian, UPMC Shadyside and UPMC Magee-Womens) of which about 6000 are ENT/endocrine. About 1500 are consult cases. The ENT division also performs approximately 3000 frozen sections annually.

Research Activities

The Head and Neck/Endocrine Pathology COE runs the tissue core for the H&N SPORE and provides support for the H&N cancer research community at UPMC. Active areas of research by faculty include:
  • Squamous cell carcinoma variants
  • HPV and EBV driven carcinogenesis
  • Translocation associated salivary gland carcinomas
  • Immunophenotypic salivary and odontogenic differentiation markers
  • Molecular profiling of thyroid and parathyroid neoplasms

Teaching Activities

The philosophy of the Head and Neck/Endocrine COE is not one of didactics, but practical application. In other words - training, not lecturing. Basic lectures are however scheduled with resident weekly didactics. Additionally, fellows and select senior residents are eligible to attend an ASCP sponsored Long Course in Head and Neck Pathology given annually, which is run by faculty in the Head and Neck COE.

Training Opportunities

Resident Rotation: 1st year - 3 weeks. 3rd and 4th year - 2 weeks.

Resident Senior Electives: 3rd and 4th year in-house 2 weeks. Consult elective 4th year and fellows 1 or 2 weeks.

Fellowship training: 1 year offered to board certified/board eligible US and Canadian Anatomic or Oral Pathologists in an ACGME track and non-ACGME instructor slot.

Observerships: up to 1 year offered to visiting scholars (trainees and faculty) nationally and internationally. External funding required.