Journal of Pathology Informatics Journal of Pathology Informatics
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RESEARCH ARTICLE
Year : 2015  |  Volume : 6  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 1

Virtual microscopy in the undergraduate teaching of pathology


1 Department of Pathology, School of Medicine, University of Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain
2 Department of Pathology, School of Medicine, University of Barcelona; Department of Pathology, Hospital Clínic, Barcelona, Spain
3 Department of Pathology, School of Medicine, University of Barcelona; Department of Pathology, Hospital Clínic; ISGlobal, Barcelona Center for International Health Research (CRESIB), Barcelona, Spain

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Jaume Ordi
Department of Pathology, School of Medicine, University of Barcelona; Department of Pathology, Hospital Clínic; ISGlobal, Barcelona Center for International Health Research (CRESIB), Barcelona
Spain
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/2153-3539.150246

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Background: Little evidence is available concerning the impact of virtual microscopy (VM) in the undergraduate teaching of pathology. We aimed: (1) to determine the impact in student scores when moving from conventional microscopy (CM) to VM; (2) to assess the students' impressions and changes in study habits regarding the impact of this tool. Methods: We evaluated two groups taking the discipline of pathology in the same course, one using CM and the other VM. The same set of slides used in the CM classes was digitized in a VENTANA iScan HT (Roche Diagnostics, Sant Cugat, Spain) at ×20 and observed by the students using the Virtuoso viewer (Roche Diagnostics). We evaluated the skill level reached by the students with an online test. A voluntary survey was undertaken by the VM group to assess the students' impressions regarding the resource. The day and time of any accession to the viewer were registered. Results: There were no differences between the two groups in their marks in the online test (mean marks for the CM and the VM groups: 9.87 ± 0.34 and 9.86 ± 0.53, respectively; P = 0.880). 86.6% of the students found the software friendly, easy-to-use and effective. 71.6% of the students considered navigation easier with VM than with CM. The most appreciated feature of VM was the possibility to access the images anywhere and at any time (93.3%). 57.5% of the accesses were made on holidays and 41.9% later than 6:00 pm. Conclusions: Virtual microscopy can effectively replace the traditional methods of learning pathology, providing mobility and convenience to medical students.


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