How the dermatopathologist enhances diagnostic and treatment options


Zoetis Reference Laboratories aims to provide easy access to a team of experts with a focus and special interest in dermatology

Content sponsored by Zoetis

Adam Christman, DVM, MBA: Welcome back friends. Joining us today is Dr. Katherine Gailbreath. Thank you for being here. You excited to chat with us about dermatopathology?

Katherine Gailbreath, DVM, PhD, DACVP: Yes, absolutely.

Adam Christman, DVM, MBA: I always love learning about this. You can never learn enough. So Dr. Gailbreath, grew up in Boise, Idaho and got her undergraduate degree in Biology from the Evergreen State College. She then went to Washington State University where she attended the DVM program, obtained her PhD and completed a residency anatomic pathology. She joined West Vet Emergency and Specialty Center back in Boise in 2010 and helped start a small local reference laboratory. She developed and headed the anatomic pathology and microbiology services at West Vet Diagnostic Laboratory until it merged with ZN Veterinary Labs in 2018, which subsequently merged with the Zoetis Reference Labs in 2019. Dr. Gabbert loves the diagnostic process and finds it very satisfying and solving biological mysteries and helping animals in the process. She has special interest in hepatic, biliary, oral, ocular, and dermatopathology. Dr. Gailbreath lives in Boise, Idaho with her family including two cats and five fish. She's close to her immediate family who still live in the area. Her family enjoys camping, hiking, fishing, swimming and exploring the western US in pop up campers. She has a green thumb and loves growing green things of all kinds, a few red, yellow and purple things that also keeps you busy, huh?

Katherine Gailbreath, DVM, PhD, DACVP: Yeah, yes.

Adam Christman, DVM, MBA: So Dr. Gailbreath, you're a dermatopathologist and member of the dermatopathology team at ZRL. So what are some areas where the dermatopathology team is striving to change and enhance and the dermatopathology community?

Katherine Gailbreath, DVM, PhD, DACVP: Yeah, so I think that one of the things that we're really doing that I enjoy the most is, is building this team. Like, we really think of it as we're all friends, of course, as well. And so we have a derm team. And, and so if you send in a dermatopathology sample, like some punch biopsies, and and it goes to one of the dermatopathologist, then you're getting the opinions of six different people who have all specialized in this field, because we share cases all day long. So if there's anything that somebody doesn't quite know what it is, or isn't quite comfortable, you know, what, whether whether it's inflammatory or not, or that we share it all, between all six of us, and we talk about cases all day long. So it's kind of this this team that we have that I think is a really great thing and helps the the clinician in the end.

Adam Christman, DVM, MBA: Yeah, that's fantastic. So and there's a special...chemical stains that are included, if indicated, right for certain things that you're doing.

Katherine Gailbreath, DVM, PhD, DACVP: Yeah, so we offer a test, which is called the dermatopathology panel with dermatologist consult. And so that test code includes your sample going to a dermatopathologist, so one of our derm team who has special training in derm path and special interest in derm path. And then it also includes any histochemical staining. So if we think that it could be an infectious agent that we can pick up on a stain like fungal dermatophyte, or acid Fast Stain, and there's a few other special stains we might want to use, that's just included. You don't have to go to your client and asked ask them to pay more for it. It's included with the panel. And then once we read the case and write the report, it goes to a dermatologist who then looks through everything and clinical images as well, I'll probably talk more about clinical images, that's a big thing. They'll look at all of that, and then write a written report with additional diagnostic suggestions. They, if, if it doesn't make sense to them, they'll they'll contact us and discuss the case with us. So we get this collaboration with a dermatologist as well. And then they'll write a report recommending more diagnostics or treatment options for you. And then once the clinician gets the report, they can actually contact that dermatologist and further discuss the case. So so you get the special stains on a whole lot more.

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