A day of interactive workshops geared towards Pathologists’ Assistants and Residents that focuses on critical skills in Pathology. The morning will consist of multiple short interactive lectures/workshops. In the afternoon the group will work through grossing case studies. These case studies will be led by teams of Pathologists’ Assistants and Residents and will discuss approaches to gross challenging cases and correlate with the microscopic sections.


Register for this program in the Pre-conference Workshop section of the registration form. The fee to attend is related to your registration category – see the registration page for more information.


Learning Objectives:

At the end of this workshop participants will be able to:

  • Explain the principles of quality in grossing.
  • Apply principles of AJCC 8th Edition update to grossing surgical specimens.
  • Discuss and develop an approach to challenging gross cases.




AJCC Update

Duc-Vinh Thai,


Quality in Grossing

Joanne Swift, Eastern Ontario Regional Laboratory Association Reference Centre (EORLA)


Learning Objectives:

At the end of the session, the participants will be able to:

  • Will know the definition of Quality.
  • Will understand how to achieve quality in Surgical Pathology.
  • Will understand how to measure and improve the Quality of Grossing in their lab.

Imagine a world in which the nature of the specimen is the only reason for recuts. Our patients are our most important stakeholder, but they are not our only one. Education, Communication and mentoring of Pathologists’ Assistants and Residents is very important, but you must find your baseline to be able to make improvements. We will go through all the steps taken to ensure Quality in Grossing. By the end of this session you will understand how to measure and improve the Quality of Grossing in your lab.
This is an interactive talk that is relevant to PA’s, residents and pathologists – anyone interested in improving the Quality of Grossing specimens, which is according to Susan Lester “one of the most important skills of the pathologist, PA or resident.”


Refreshment Break


PA Award Lecture

Speaker (Award Winner) TBA 


Experiences in Lab Management

Jim Tsourgiannis,


Lunch and Annual General Meeting




Case Study 1: Gross Dissection of Pelvic Exenteration Specimens

Stephanie Sharpley,

Thomas Shi, Western University


Learning Objectives:

At the end of the session, the participants will be able to:

  • Gain an understanding of the anatomy of a pelvic exenteration specimen.
  • Develop an approach to grossing cervical cancer specimen.
  • Understand the pathology and staging of cervical cancers.

Gynecologic resections can be daunting due to their complexity. We present a case of pelvic exenteration from a 53 year old female with recurrent squamous cell carcinoma of the cervix post chemotherapy/radiation. During our session we will start with an overview of the gross finding of the specimen, followed by discussion on sections taken and strategies for grossing complex pelvic specimens. Then we will present histologic findings and correlate them to gross findings. Lastly, we will discuss pathology and staging of cervical cancers.


Group Case Study Discussion


Case Study 2:

Nancy Liu,

Mel Palmero,


Group Case Study Discussion


Case Study 3:

Emmanuelle Chung,

Irene Xie,


Group Case Study Discussion


Refreshment Break


Case Study 4: Approach to Gross Evaluation of Thymic Tumors

Ayesha Baig, McGill University

Greta Evaristo, McGill University


Learning Objectives:

At the end of the session, the participants will be able to:

  • List components of CAP protocol for reporting thymic tumors relevant in guiding gross evaluation.
  • Develop a standardized approach to macroscopic evaluation of thymic specimens.
  • Discuss challenging cases and practical tips for their management.
  • Correlate the gross, microscopic and radiologic findings of thymic neoplasms.

While rare neoplasms, thymic tumors continue to represent an interpretative challenge for pathologists and a management challenge for clinicians. Staging remains the single most important prognostic factor and thus standardized macroscopic and microscopic evaluations of these specimens are imperative for optimal patient management. This workshop is dedicated to review the current CAP protocol for reporting of thymic tumors, highlighting the important considerations with respect to gross assessment of the specimen. A step-wise approach to specimen orientation, description, and sampling will be presented. Radiologic, gross and histological examples will be provided to understand the correlation between these findings. Additionally, a case-based discussion will be used to explore practical approach to challenging cases. The session is directed at pathology residents, pathology assistants as well as general and anatomic pathologists.


Group Case Study Discussion


Case Study 5:

Maliha Khara,

Christine Orr,


Group Case Study Discussion


Case Study 6:

Kathryn Greenal,


Group Case Study Discussion