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The medical student neuropathology rotation is a 4-week experimental and self-study elective designed to consolidate and extend the students experimental knowledge of diseases of the nervous system. It is of particular interest and value to those considering future careers in pathology, neurology, neurosurgery, radiology and psychiatry. Prior to start of rotation student should email CV to Karen Weber (weberkm@upmc.edu) and set up appointment to meet with Rotation Director.


Intake Interview:
Review training history

Long range career objectives

Short range objective on NP rotation

Review website (especially Educational Objectives)


Goals and Activities:

  1. Participate with team (No clinical call). Attend all diagnostic, clinical management and teaching conferences of the division as well as daily case reviews during the standard work week (M-F 8:00-6:00).
  2. Be fully responsible for 2 surgical neuropathology cases per day
    •    Preview case radiology and EMR
    •    Perform intraoperative consultation
    •    Review permanent histopathology and define workup
  3. Read at least 25 pages in general Neuropathology text per day
  4. Take 1 Blackboard quiz per day
  5. Prepare a 10’ PowerPoint presentation for QA conference on topic of your choice or create 1 PowerPoint neuropathology case study
  6. Cut 4 autopsy brains and write gross description
  7. A complete list of Educational Objectives can be found at http://neuro.pathology.pitt.edu/training/objectives.htm.


Exit interview:

  1. Participation on service and QA
  2. Review of Autopsy gross descriptions
  3. Assessment of rotation
    • Readings, web, conferences, didactic materials (Quizzes)


At end of rotation you should be able to:

Review routine neurosurgical cases and identify pertinent clinical information

Create a differential diagnosis for clinical findings

Know histopathological findings of common neuropathology entities:

  • Glioma, metastases, meningioma, reactive conditions

Create diagnostic evaluation panel for clinical differential diagnosis

Know purpose of molecular analysis of common neuropathology entities

Know how to use neuropathology texts to discover methodology for evaluation of uncommon neuropathological entities.

Perform gross review of autopsy brain, sample and create gross description