CDC’s ePathology is an electronic platform for pathologists, laboratorians, and other medical and veterinary professionals from the United States and around the world to receive real-time consultation for pathologic diagnosis of suspected cases of infectious diseases. The ePathology platform is managed by CDC’s Infectious Diseases Pathology Branch (IDPB).

Users can electronically submit images and scanned pathology slides for the evaluation of various infectious diseases. A response to consultation requests will be provided within 2 business days, excluding Federal holidays. This interactive and rapid exchange of information, in conjunction with the diagnostic tests available at IDPB, will enhance users’ capacity to respond to and understand infectious diseases of public health significance.

CDC’s ePathology Services:

  1. Diagnostic assistance function, in which pathologists, clinicians and other health professionals receive expedited consultation on digital images and scanned pathology slides submitted for review.
  2. Real-time telepathology imaging (RTIS) (in development) can be arranged for pathology cases received by CDC (dependent on the external submitter’s network connection and technical capacity). IDPB also welcomes external RTIS video streams of case submissions.
  3. Reference and training (in development), in which users can browse through concise reviews of the pathology of infectious disease cases, including an image library. Most material is free of copyright and users are welcome to store and copy material in the public domain (please, kindly cite the source). Users can contact ePathology@cdc.gov for source information on photographs for acknowledgement purposes.
Please Note

CDC’s ePathology is not a substitution for diagnostic testing. ePathology can be used to provide preliminary insights into a cause of disease. Definitive diagnosis requires the submission of formalin-fixed tissue for laboratory testing by CDC’s IDPB lab.

For more Information on submission of formalin-fixed tissues see: Specimen Submission Guidelines.

IDPB does not accept submissions directly from patients. If you are a patient with a medical emergency, please consult your healthcare provider or the nearest medical facility. CDC does not provide clinical care, diagnose illness, provide treatment, prescribe medication, or refer patients to specialists.

CDC’s ePathology requires a CDC Specimen Submission form 50.34 completed and submitted electronically with images for teleconsultation. Access the most recent form (CDC 50.34).

The following information in the CDC Specimen Submission form 50.34 is REQUIRED for consultation:

  • Your name and affiliation
  • Your email and full contact information
  • Patient initials, age, gender
  • Type of specimen
  • Date specimen was collected, stain used, and magnification of the microscopic field captured
  • Presumed diagnosis
  • Any other pertinent data, including travel history, animal or other exposures, underlying medical conditions, immune status, length of disease course, pre or post treatment, and other related information. (If necessary, additional information can be provided in the body of the e-mail or an attached Word document.)
  • When possible, please attach multiple digital images, including electron micrographs, and other relevant documents to the submission email. Our e-mail system will accept e-mails only with a file size under 30 MB; therefore, please compress your images and/or documents if necessary. Please send your teleconsultation request to ePathology@cdc.gov.