Pathology as a Career

 Guest article by Dr. Yatin Talwar.

Hi Friends,

This is Dr Yatin Talwar. Just a few days back i got a call from a very dear friend Dr Arun Kumar MD .
he wanted to enquire about scope of pathology per-se for pg aspirants.

Well to be frank ,I was first of all surprised to hear it from Dr Arun kumar sir , asking for scope as he is well versed with all fields of medicine and it felt as an honour to write something for this page which has helped so many students, especially during the tough time, we had during neet session this yr.

So my views about pathology and the future prospects are as follows, the ideas have been divided into various subheadings

Personal life

1. Firstly this is one of the few fields of post graduation which is not gender specific and suits both males and females

2.less night duties and better personal and family life , which is the reason why surgeons and medicine people prefer pathologist as there spouse or better half
# better personal life means a lot to many people (in fact most ), after the gruelsome studies of postgraduation and the stiff market competition . and yes the saying is true that money cant buy everything especially happiness and time !!!
imagine having night duties all your life, I, wont go into much details as i leave the rest to imagination of the readers about the falacies. 
in short i`ll again say a saying that ``life is not to be spend in icu`s or ot or wards ",

Professional adequacy and job profile

1. I would say as i always say in my classes also , why i preferred pathology was
a) independency to work from one owns peace of mind

b) coming from a doctors family with its fourth generation doing there MBBS , i have seen lots of medico legal cases , and people even going in depression once practice hits a bottom rock after some medico legal cases. With medico legal cases on rise and Indian people following the us trend of suing medicos ,this profession is changing its direction
imagine doing 20 lap choles and losing all the money in one spoiled case :)

c) another big issue is settlement. with medicine people and surgery going into superspeciality and fellowships ,even gyneco/obs are pursuing fellowships in u think is it wise to put another 10 years in higher studies ?? see we are humans not tortoise of life span of 300 years .(average human life span is still 70 yrs :/) see guys u have already wasted 1/3rd of your life studying , do u plan to spend another 5-10 years more in it... when will you get settled in mid 40`s ???

d) future scope 

see with diagnosis having a primary role in management and with stricter protocols being followed,the field has immense opportunities today be

i ) icu management and sepsis control


ii ) be it cardiac pathology (the famous concepts of hibernating myocardium and reperfusion injury are actually brain child of a pathologist)


iii) be it medical oncology
with tumour markers and cluster differentiation taking a central role in diagnosis today , even immunopathology and oncopathology have become a sought after branch 

iv ) still those of older school and conventions , the bread and butter is the routine investigations which even a rmp or bahs or a bams needs , & please bring it to your kind notice a laughing fact that a gmp or anyother person of other field cant interfere in your work ( just like a BHMS ,BAMS or BUMS treating a patient of cough cold fever or diarrohea or even reddness in eyes (thus eating away market of another speciality ....a serious fact said in a joking way)

v ) importance of pathology can be judged from sayings / quotes of some very famous personalities of our feilds: 
Jean Nicolas Corvisart says (Professor of Medicine, College de France, Paris)
"The physician who fails to combine pathological physiology with his anatomy will never be anything more than a more or less adroit, diligent and patient prosecutor."
from The Great Doctors—A Biographical History of Medicine
p. 1, Henry E. Sigerist. Dover Publications, New York

H. L. Mencken 
US journalist
"Pathology would remain a lovely science, even if there were no therapeutics, just as seismology is a lovely science, though no one knows how to stop earthquakes."
A Mencken Chrestomathy Ch. XXX

As a professional well established in the field and doing my residency programme in cardio path , here is what i would to say finally for pathology for future aspiring medicos:

Careers in this field are extremely broad, with a number of different training programs available for people who are interested in pathology. It have very good scope in India. One can work in Multi Specialist Hospitals in India. or can open his own clinic. Pathologists typically work in research and laboratory settings and rarely ever with patients. Pathologists receive specimens and samples from physicians during surgery or examination and use the many tools of pathology to analyze samples for diagnosis of disease. Pathologists may spend time teaching medical students, as pathology is a core course of medical training. Pathologists may also perform autopsies, although autopsies are usually performed by forensic doctors.


Growth of pathology feild is 15 to 20% per year also as per nabl accredition (not to mention small labs) 40 to 50 thousand lab centers are present in india .but experienced pathologist are rare to find ,when compared to the demand. Best research and lab centers in india are those of RANBAXY , BIOCON ,METROPLOIS ,NICOLAS AND PIRAMAL,THYROCARE , ANAND LABS . ADANI ,Dr. Lal path lab & Offcourse RELICARE. .Average salary for a 2 -3 yr experienced pathologist runs around 2-3 lakhs basic..rise depends upon your expertise and your job profile.

Also posting a source please go through it

According to Cygnus estimates, the Indian diagnostic and pathological labs test services market was valued at Rs66.87 billion in FY2008. Indian diagnostics and pathological labs, based on the working level, are classified into high-end labs, accounting for 38% of the market share, manual labs (28%) and second-level regional labs (34%). By therapeutic segment, the major share is held by biochemistry (38%), followed by immunology (23%), haematology (15.8%), critical care, urine routine, others, microbiology and coagulation. Seventy seven per cent of the market is contributed by biochemistry and clinical pathology, which includes immunology and haematology. According to the estimates, the Indian diagnostics and labs test services, in view of its growth potential, is expected to reach Rs159.89 billion by FY2013, reflecting a CAGR of 18.9% during FY09-FY13. Applications of molecular diagnostic testing will revolutionise clinical practices with major implications, opportunities and challenges for the labs. 

Have a nice time and all the best

Dr Yatin Talwar

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