An automated tissue preclassification approach for telepathology: implementation and performance analysis
This study was conducted to examine the validity and accuracy of telepathology for biopsy specimens from allografted kidney. The still video images of paraffin sections were transmitted via a two-way telephone by use of a digitized telephone network, ISDN. The quality of the transmitted images was sufficient for the diagnosis, especially at higher magnification. A total of 37 needle biopsy specimens from the 31 allografted kidneys were presented for consultation and diagnosed by an expert pathologist at Tottori University, until July 2000. The average number of transmitted images was 7.1 (range 3-12). Of the 37 specimens, diagnoses by telepathology agreed well with those made through direct microscopy in the 30 specimens. Insufficient or improper diagnosis was made in four specimens, in which proper and pathognomonic still images were not transmitted. Three cases were not diagnosed by telepathology because of the difficulty in making differential diagnosis. From these results, we concluded that telepathology is useful for transplantation pathology, in spite of limitations in some cases.