A pathologist is a medical doctor who specializes in the diagnosis and classification of diseases by looking at tissue or cells under a microscope and by interpreting medical laboratory tests. Seventy percent of medical decisions are determined based on the diagnosis of the pathologist.
The pathologist also is the doctor who examines specimens removed during surgery for conditions such as cancer, to determine whether a tumor is benign or cancerous, and if cancerous, the exact cell type, grade, and stage of the tumor. In some cases, the pathologist also performs molecular biomarker analysis and reports genetic alterations that may guide targeted therapy for a specific cancer. Learn more at yourpathologist.org.