An Examination Of The Techniques In Pathology Biology Essay


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Diseases are diagnosed by analysis carried out by biomedical scientists in pathology. Several techniques and procedure are used to analyse samples to make diagnoses. There are four different pathology departments. They are haematology, microbiology, clinical chemistry, and cellular pathology. All pathology disciplines makes diagnoses and monitor diseases by using different techniques, methods and procedure. In this essay, a technique, procedure and method of tests biomedical scientist use in diagnosing and monitoring of diseases in all the four pathology is explored. In addition, any further investigation that can be carried out as a consequence of initial results obtained from such test is also explored.

Full blood count (FBC) is a clinical procedure practised in the haematology department which tests for abnormalities in the blood. It is a test used in diagnoses of diseases such as anaemia which is characterised by the significant decrease in the red cells and haemoglobin. An FBC is used to obtain counts of the level of different cells within the body system. The number of the cells, the size and proportions of these cells and the haemoglobin level is measured in an FBC. (Carter et al., 2005) . Full blood count is measured on whole blood sample by using an automated machine referred to as FBC analyser. The analyser measures the platelet, red cells and the white cells. The results are sent to a computer which shows any abnormalities. The results also include the mean corpuscular volume (MCV), mean corpuscular haemoglobin (MCH), mean corpuscular haemoglobin concentration (MCHC), and the red cell distribution width (RDW). RWD is a measure of the variation of red cell in the blood sample. Diseases that can be diagnosed using FBC analysis are

Figure 1 Normal ranges of blood cells. (Carter et al., 2005)

Blood cells


Erythrocytes (red cells) / g-L


Leucocytes (white cells)/ L

( 4-10 x 10 9 )


(150-400 x10 9)

This task is done by qualified biomedical scientist. However, further investigation can be done on samples with unexpected abnormal results. Blood smear is prepared which is then

Glucose is a simple sugar that serves as an energy source for cells in the body. The blood glucose concentration is controlled by hormones such as insulin in the body. The normal range of blood glucose concentration is between 3.6 and 5.8mM.However, the blood glucose level fluctuates throughout the day. An immense increase or decrease in the mean blood glucose level indicates a medical condition. A significant increase and decrease in the blood glucose concentration is referred to as hyperglycaemia and hypoglycaemia respectively. Glucose test is one of the major tests performed in the clinical biochemistry department. It is used to make diagnoses of diseases such as diabetes which is characterised by hyperglycaemia. For accurate glucose analysis, the suitable sample used in measuring of the glucose concentration is the blood sample which is collected in a tube containing fluoride oxalate. Fluoride oxalate inhibits enzymes involved in glycolysis which aid the prevention of the red cells from metabolising the glucose in the sample. There are several methods used in glucose testing. They are fasting glucose testing, Glucose testing can be done using a fasting plasma glucose or non fasting glucose. For fasting glucose testing, patients are advised to fast for about 8hours.

Swab test is a one of the diagnostic tests performed in the microbiology department. Swab tests are requested by doctors to isolate and identify the pathogen in a specific site of an infection. A swab is a short rod with a small wad of cotton around it. A sample is taken by brushing the swab on the infected site which is transported to the laboratory by an appropriate medium. After inoculation, swabs are processed and microbes are cultured. After, antibiotic sensitivity test is performed on the isolated microbes to enhance treatment. Swabs can be taken from the throat, mouth, wounds, ear, and eyes and vagina. Different pathogen colonises specific site in the skin and tissues. Bacteria species that colonises the throat or nose includes streptococcus viridians, diptheroids and streptococcus pyogenes which is isolated from about 30% of patients with acute sore throat. (Shanson 1989).

Biopsies are

In conclusion, biomedical scientists work in relation with the doctors to give proper diagnoses of diseases and treatment. This essay has explained in depth the diagnostic approach pathology takes in the health

in conclusion, diagnostic approach biomedical scientist take towards diseases in pathology is very important within the health


J.CARDEN, (2009), ‘’what is biomedical science’’, study in United Kingdom, Last assessed 19/09/2010

Carter W, Bowen J et al, (2005), Full blood count Last assessed 6/10/2010 glucose ... glucose


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