The Empirical Foundations of Telepathology: Evidence of Feasibility and Intermediate Effects

Rashid L. Bashshur, Elizabeth A. Krupinski, Ronald S. Weinstein, Matthew R. Dunn, Noura Bashshur

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations


Introduction: Telepathology evolved from video microscopy (i.e., "television microscopy") research in the early 1950s to video microscopy used in basic research in the biological sciences to a basic diagnostic tool in telemedicine clinical applications. Its genesis can be traced to pioneering feasibility studies regarding the importance of color and other image-based parameters for rendering diagnoses and a series of studies assessing concordance of virtual slide and light microscopy diagnoses. This article documents the empirical foundations of telepathology. Methods: A selective review of the research literature during the past decade (2005-2016) was conducted using robust research design and adequate sample size as criteria for inclusion. Conclusions: The evidence regarding feasibility/acceptance of telepathology and related information technology applications has been well documented for several decades. The majority of evidentiary studies focused on intermediate outcomes, as indicated by comparability between telepathology and conventional light microscopy. A consistent trend of concordance between the two modalities was observed in terms of diagnostic accuracy and reliability. Additional benefits include use of telepathology and whole slide imaging for teaching, research, and outreach to resource-limited countries. Challenges still exist, however, in terms of use of telepathology as an effective diagnostic modality in clinical practice.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)155-191
Number of pages37
JournalTelemedicine and e-Health
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2017


  • cost
  • digital pathology
  • telemedicine
  • telepathology
  • virtual microscopy
  • whole slide imaging

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Informatics
  • Health Information Management


Dive into the research topics of 'The Empirical Foundations of Telepathology: Evidence of Feasibility and Intermediate Effects'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this